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Panama's Vanishing Islands

Panama's Vanishing Islands

Panama's idyllic islands are threatened by a rising sea, but one community has a plan... The Guna Yala archipelago is made up of dozens of tiny, tropical, low-lying islands off the Caribbean coast of Panama. They are populated by the Guna people - Latin America's most fiercely independent, and many would say, most savvy, indigenous group. But the Guna are in trouble. Rising sea levels as a result of climate change, together with a growing population, threaten island life. The Guna aren't alone of course - millions of people around the globe could be displaced from coastal villages as the oceans envelop land in the coming decades. But unlike most vulnerable groups, the Guna of Gardi Sugdub island have a plan. They are intent on building a new community on the mainland, and re-locating. Could their efforts provide a model for other communities confronting climate displacement in the region, and even beyond?

Photo Credit: Simon Maybin.