BBC article (10:42 GMT, Monday, 10 November 2008) "Plan for new Maldives homeland"
Public domain images from Wikipedia.
I'm quite impressed by the forward-looking nature of their new leader. I'm also impressed by the unstated determination on his part to be as self-reliant as possible in that he had not demanded a new homeland to be set aside by the powerful countries responsible for most of the global warming in the world. I think it is a touching story and I hope other nations pay attention to consider setting aside land the Maldivian people can buy. Even better, if the rich polluting countries recognize their role in the eventual destruction of the Maldives and pay for such a piece of land on the Maldivian's behalf.
Quotes of interest in the article:
The Maldives is the lowest nation in the world. Its highest land is little more than two metres above sea level.
The United Nations estimates that sea levels may rise globally by nearly 60 centimetres this century.
"Global warming and environmental issues are issues of major concern to the Maldivian people. We are just about three feet (0.91 metre) above sea level," Mr Zaki said, speaking from the capital, Male.
"So any sea level rise could have a devastating effect on the people of the Maldives and their very survival".
Mr Nasheed's plan is to create a "sovereign wealth fund" using tourism revenues to buy land so that future generations will have somewhere to rebuild their lives if they have to leave.
He wants somewhere within the region, where the culture is similar - possibly India or Sri Lanka.
Perhaps Australia might be convinced to sell Christmas Island (which Singapore "sold" to Australia years ago - in fact, the British Government authorized the "sale" on our behalf at Australia's request. See the wikipedia entry on Christmas Island).