Long before the Pacific will rise to a level that will leave its estimated 30,000 islands submerged, most of them might be severely affected by frequent flooding and storms.
Asian countries, home to about 60 percent of the world's population, will be hit hardest by changing weather patterns and a degrading environment, research indicates.
As world leaders gear up to spend the coming weeks in South Africa haggling over economically bearable cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, climate change is already exacerbating environmental conditions and threatening the lives and livelihoods of thousands of Pacific Islanders.
In order for global climate change policies and efforts to progress, intense local activism and countries most adversely affected by climate change must play a leading role.
With the Kyoto Protocol's first commitment period set to expire in 2012, Connie Hedegaard, EU commissioner for climate action, is pushing for more countries to agree on binding commitments to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
As the effects of accelerating climate change ripple outward, pushing millions from their land and homes, experts warn that international human rights and refugee law needs to catch up to the reality on the ground if migrants are to be given adequate protection and support.
With political will to dramatically cut the world's greenhouse gas emissions failing to materialise, a multi-pronged approach is needed to protect the millions of people who are being displaced as a result of environmental factors driven largely by climate change, experts say.
U.N. peacekeeping missions face myriad problems but they remain the most effective strategy for dealing with post- conflict situations, says Page Fortna, a political science professor at Columbia University who has extensively researched the impact of various missions around the world.
"In South-South cooperation we are all partners," Josephine Ojiambo, ambassador of Kenya to the U.N. and president of the U.N. General Assembly High-Level Committee on South-South Cooperation, told IPS. "SSC specifically shies away from the donor-client relationship."
Eleven years ago, 192 countries – all the United Nations member states – agreed to step up the integration of women in international peacebuilding and security processes, a promise that has remained largely unmet.
Surgery saves the lives of millions of people around the world, but only a tiny percentage of them live in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), where a shortage of skills, supplies and infrastructure can turn easily treatable accidents and illnesses into lifelong disabilities and even death.
Burundi will put U.N. Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security into practice with a National Action Plan (NAP) that is ready to be signed within the coming months.
It is short sighted to dismiss the benefits or potential of engaging the private sector in human rights matters, says Sara Lulo, director of the Avon Global Center for Women and Justice at Cornell Law School.
Ordinary women's voices are too often ignored when it comes to solving their own problems, admonishes Loga Virahsawmy, Director of the Southern African NGO Gender Links, Mauritius and Francophone Office.
"The agenda for women's rights and empowerment in each country must be supported by the political leadership," says Norah Matovu-Winyi, Executive Director, African Women's Development and Communication Network (FEMNET).