The Future Of The Pacific Islands

From the U.S state of Hawaii’i, to Papua New Guinea, The Pacific Islands are a set of beautiful volcanic creations, bearing tropical fruits in abundance, where the locals are known to have radiant smiles. Historically, these islands have been through it all: colonization, genocide and persecution by different ruling empires, and even U.S occupation to this day. And today, their biggest threat is not a nation or an empire, but climate change, pollution and rising sea levels.

Plastic pollution is a major problem for the Pacific Ocean, heaps of plastic, styrofoam and other debris are found there, harming eco-systems and polluting waters. a solution would be for a total plastic and styrofoam ban in the Pacific islands and in nearby countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Taiwan, Japan and South Korea. Chemical pollution harms all species, and destroys coral reefs that are vital to the eco-system. One specific chemical, Oxybenzone, often found in sunscreen lotions, is the most harmful to coral reefs, and is in the process of being banned in several countries. The loss of tradition and culture also affects the Pacific islanders. This is due to cultural genocide suffered in the last century.

Self sufficiency, permanent agriculture, and reforestation are solutions to put a stop to the Pacific Islands dependency on countries like the United States, and to reinforce harmony with nature, which is how the Pacific islanders have been living for centuries. The only reason why people haven’t started to inforce this, is a lack of awareness and a lack of funding. For example, the island of Ascension had not one tree, shrub or plant on its territory, until one environmentalist and botanist, Joseph Hooker, fertilized the soil and planted literally thousands of trees and plants in one year. Now, the island is a jungle, and a common tourist location. This goes to show that reforestation and nature preservation is more than possible.