Tropical Pacific Island Environments
Pacific Conservation Biology
4(4) 370 - 370
AbstractThe Pacific island region comprises a large and ecologically diverse area of the Earth, but is fragile and highly sensitive to environmental change. On some islands 80% or more of the species are endemic. These species are particularly vulnerable due to their geographic and ecological isolation. It is an area where local cultures conflict with Western development, leading to a myriad of environmental and social problems. Impacts affecting the Pacific islands include international mining, rising sea levels, land degradation, logging, toxic waste contamination of land and ocean, and contamination from nuclear testing. The extent of these problems has yet to gain international attention. Low education and communication standards in the region mean that many of the local people are not aware of environmental problems. Island governments have little political will to legislate to protect the environment. An exception is the Sustainable Development Bill that has been drafted recently in Fiji.
© CSIRO 1998