Expert Opinion on Environmental BiologyISSN: 2325-9655

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Review Article, Expert Opin Environ Biol Vol: 7 Issue: 2

Solutions for Post-Territorial Sovereignty in Small Island States

So Youn Kim*

Norman Paterson School of International Affairs (NPSIA), Carleton University, Canada

*Corresponding Author : So Youn Kim
Norman Paterson School of International Affairs (NPSIA), Carleton University, Canada
Tel: 5197017195

Received: March 14, 2018 Accepted: April 05, 2018 Published: April 10, 2018

Citation: Kim SY (2018) Solutions for Post-Territorial Sovereignty in Small Island States. Expert Opin Environ Biol 7:2. doi: 10.4172/2325-9655.1000154


Climate change threatens human, national and environmental security. My research is on one of the most vulnerable groups, small low-lying island states in the group of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), whose lands will be submerged partially or entirely by 2100 [1]. Their consequential loss of territory would result in the loss of legal status as nation-states. The paper will discuss the following: 1) international law of statehood and the implication of loss of territory for certain states; 2) various options including creating structures in existing locations (including constructing floating platforms/ installation, building sea walls, and creating an artificial island farther above sea level) and two relocation plans (merger/ cessation, de-territorialization), with assessment of criteria such as existence of historical precedents, support from other countries, temporal/spatial implications, financial/engineering practicality and international legal implication; 3) proposal in change of international law (UNCLOS- recognition of artificially created structure/islands as territory and freezing baseline). Lastly, the paper will conclude by addressing features of the problem as well as the most plausible and viable solution. This research has broader implications for the global community because rising sea levels will affect two- thirds of the world population living within 100 kilometers of any coastline [2]. It is my hope that this research will serve as a legal reference and practical guide for island as well as maritime states in the years to come.

Keywords: Climate change; International law; Statehood; Sovereignty; Small island states

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