Welcome to GIN - the primary information source about islands worldwide
With support from
  Past Month's News  
Final call to save the world from 'climate catastrophe'
INCHEON, South Korea, 8 October 2018 (BBC) - After three years of research and a week of haggling between scientists and government officials at a meeting in South Korea, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has issued a special report on the impact of global warming of 1.5C.

Ministry of Environment alarmed over new algae in Seychelles
VICTORIA, Seychelles, 6 October 2018 (SNA) - The Seychelles Ministry of Environment has described as alarming the rate by which a new algae is spreading and threatening the island nation's marine life, an issue the tourism industry is keeping a worried and wary eye on.

Nauru orders MSF to stop mental health work on island
LONDON, UK, 6 October 2018 (Guardian) - Nauru’s government has ordered Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) to stop work there immediately, despite a physical and mental health crisis in the country.

Environment planning tool for Pacific sustainable tourism
APIA, Samoa, 5 October 2018 (SPREP) - The Pacific tourism industry took a step forward in protecting the environment with the launch of the Environment Impact Assessment Guidelines for Coastal Tourism Development for the Pacific Islands and Territories, a document to enhance sustainable tourism development.  

To conserve West Papua, start with land rights
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 5 October 2018 (Mongabay) - West Papua Province in Indonesia retains over 90% of its forest cover, as well as some of the world’s most biologically diverse marine areas. The drive to become a conservation province, however, runs the risk of repeating past mistakes that have disadvantaged indigenous communities and left their customary land rights unrecognized.

'Nature' being prescribed by GPs in Shetland
LONDON, UK, 5 October 2018 (BBC) - Nature prescriptions such as picking up driftwood from a beach are being offered by GPs in Shetland in what is believed to be a UK first.

Dam project pushes threatened orangutans from forest to farms
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 5 October 2018 (Mongabay) - A planned hydroelectric dam that threatens the world’s most endangered great ape is already having an impact, days after a ringing endorsement from Indonesian officials and academics.

Panos Caribbean climate change response
KINGSTON, Jamaica, 5 October 2018 (IPS) - In the face of the many challenges posed by climate change, Panos Caribbean, a global network of institutes working to give a voice to poor and marginalised communities, says the Caribbean must raise its voice to demand and support the global temperature target of 1.5 °C.

Indigenous views crucial in climate change debate
AUCKLAND, New Zealand, 4 October 2018 (RNZ) - The importance of western and indigenous perspectives uniting when it comes to tackling climate change in the region was highlighted at a recent conference in Auckland.

Ban on putting Shetland in a box on maps comes into force
LONDON, UK, 4 October 2018 (BBC) - New rules barring public bodies from putting Shetland in a box on official documents have come into force.

The beginning of the end of Andaman & Nicobar's tribal groups
NEW DELHI, India, 3 October 2018 (DTE) - The Indian government’s recent removal of Restricted Area Permit from 29 islands in the archipelago reeks of avarice and tokenism, and could spell ultimate doom for its indigenous peoples.

Commercial fishing banned across much of the Arctic
LONDON, UK, 3 October 2018 (Guardian) - Commercial fishing will be banned across much of the Arctic under a new agreement signed on Wednesday in Greenland, closing down access to a vast area of sea that is newly opening up under climate change.

Thailand bay made famous by The Beach closed indefinitely
BANGKOK, Thailand, 3 October 2018 (Guardian) - The golden sands and crystal blue water of Maya Bay, ringed by cliffs on Ko Phi Phi Leh island, has become one of Thailand’s most-visited tourist destinations since it shot to fame as the movie’s location.

Anger over Palu's long wait for tsunami aid
PALU, Indonesia, 2 October 2018 (Guardian) - Muhammad Siadi had the vacant stare of someone who might have just returned from a war zone.

Did sonar cause unexplained whale deaths?
LONDON, UK, 2 October 2018 (BBC) - Scientists are investigating why 45 badly decomposed beaked whales were washed up on Hebridean islands such as North and South Uist and Tiree, with another 22 stranded on the west coast of Ireland and one in Northern Ireland during August and September.

Plans for largest solar array in Channel Islands released
LONDON, UK, 2 October 2018 (ITV) - Guernsey Electricity and Guernsey Post have announced plans for the largest solar array in the Channel Islands to date. The panels will produce around 200,000kWh of electricity each year to power Guernsey Post's fleet of vehicles.

Jakarta cancels permits for controversial bay reclamation project
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 2 October 2018 (Mongabay) - The Jakarta administration says it has finally pulled the plug on a $40 billion land reclamation project pushed by the Indonesian government off the coast of the nation’s capital.

What does 1.5C mean in a warming world?
LONDON, UK, 2 October 2018 (BBC) - For decades, researchers argued the global temperature rise must be kept below 2C by the end of this century to avoid the worst impacts. But scientists now argue that keeping below 1.5C is a far safer limit for the world.

IPCC: Climate scientists consider 'life changing' report
LONDON, UK, 1 October 2018 (BBC) - It is likely to be the most critical and controversial report on climate change in recent years.

A rallying cry to ditch plastic, but is it too late?
LONDON, UK, 1 October 2018 (Guardian) - Four hundred miles off the coast of Australia lies remote, pristine Lord Howe island: home to the largest colony of flesh-footed shearwaters on earth and a plastic-pollution horror story of 2018 proportions.

Adventures and misadventures on the subantarctic islands
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 30 September 2018 (Stuff) - Shona Riddell's great-great grandmother was born on Auckland Island during a short-lived and disastrous 19th-century settlement. In 2016, Shona visited her ancestor's remote birthplace, and was inspired to write a book about New Zealand's subantarctic islands and their dramatic human history.

Indonesia earthquake: Huge surge in death toll
LONDON, UK, 30 September 2018 (BBC) - At least 832 people were killed in the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, the national disaster agency says.

Researchers release endangered crows into the forests of Guam
SEATTLE, US, 28 September 2018 (UW) - For more than 2 million years, the native forests on the South Pacific islands of Guam and Rota were home to several thousand crows, members of a species found nowhere else on Earth.

Welsh island to undergo transformation
CARDIFF, Wales, 28 September 2018 (WalesOnline) - Flat Holm in the Bristol Channel is to be transformed with the help of £1.3million worth of funding so more visitors can see it.

New report on the Pacific coral reefs launched
APIA, Samoa, 28 September 2018 (SPREP) - The Pacific Ocean holds one quarter of the world’s coral reefs, and these reefs provide around 25 to 100 percent of the dietary protein of Pacific Islanders, as well as provide livelihoods, shoreline protection and economic opportunity in the form of tourism.

Small islands use big platform to warn of climate change
NEW YORK, US, 27 September 2018 (AP) - On the map, their homes are tiny specks in a vast sea of blue, rarely in the headlines and far removed from the centers of power.

Half of killer whales doomed to die from pollution
LONDON, UK, 27 September 2018 (Guardian) - At least half of the world’s killer whale populations are doomed to extinction due to toxic and persistent pollution of the oceans but research shows that orca populations in the high north, off Norway, Iceland, Canada and the Faroes, are far less contaminated due to their distance from major PCB sources.

Science, tourism clash on Great Barrier Reef
SYDNEY, Australia, 27 September 2018 (AFP) - A row is raging over Australia's warming-damaged Great Barrier Reef, with firms worried that scientists' apocalyptic warnings are scaring visitors out of the water.

Spring has sprung on remote Macquarie Island
HOBART, Australia, 27 September 2018 (ABC) - Spring on Macquarie Island looks a bit different to the rest of Australia. Some of the world's most incredible creatures return to the island to raise their families at this time of year, when temperatures start to rise above zero.

Native life thriving on cane toad-infested island
KUNUNURRA, Australia, 27 September 2018 (ABC) - How do cane toads survive on Adolphus Island in Western Australia's far north that has no permanent water source?

The global effort to save coral from climate change
KEY LARGO, US, 26 September 2018 (Guardian) - As an ocean early warning system, coral reefs have been sounding the alarm for years. They have been bleached white by marine heatwaves and killed off en masse by a combination of factors including pollution, overfishing, acidification and climate change.

The Ocean Cleanup chooses Iridium
MCLEAN, US, 26 September 2018 (SPX) - Iridium Communications Inc. has been selected as the preferred provider of satellite communications services for The Ocean Cleanup , the non-profit organization deploying advanced technologies to rid the world's oceans of plastic.

Environmental exchange programme for Fiji's traditional leaders
APIA, Samoa, 26 September 2018 (SPREP) - An exchange programme in Fiji for Taveuni and Kadavu traditional leaders has proven a huge success in encouraging sharing and learning about sustainable development and planning issues at the island level.

Spotlight on sea-level rise
PARIS, France, 26 September 2018 (ESA) - Scientists are gathering in the Azores this week to share findings on how satellite has revealed changes in the height of the sea, ice, inland bodies of water and more. Of concern to all is the fact that global sea level has not only been rising steadily over the last 25 years, but recently it is rising at a much faster rate.

Saving Scotland's heritage from the rising seas
NEW YORK, US, 25 September 2018 (NYT) - More than 3,000 archaeological sites - among them standing stone circles, Norse halls and a Neolithic tomb graffitied by Vikings - have endured for millenniums, scattered across the roughly 70 islands that make up the Orkney archipelago.

China almost has Australia surrounded
SYDNEY, Australia, 25 September 2018 (News.com.au) - China's island-grabbing campaign is getting close to home. It’s muscling in on tiny nations from the Indian to the Pacific Oceans. But Australia’s begun pushing back.

No statehood for Puerto Rico while his critics are in office
NEW YORK, US, 25 September 2018 (Caribbean News Now) - In the latest salvo in his ongoing feud with Puerto Rican leaders, US President Donald Trump on Monday said there would be no statehood for the US territory as long as critics such as San Juan’s mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz remain in office.

Mediterranean new plan to transform small-scale fisheries
ROME, Italy, 25 September 2018 (WWF) - Today Fisheries Ministers from the Mediterranean and the Black Sea and the European Commission have officially launched a detailed Plan of Action to ensure a sustainable future for small-scale fisheries and the marine environment in the region.

Blackouts on Gotland stoke fear as reactors shut
VISBY, Sweden, 25 September 2018 (Bloomberg) - There have been 10 major outages on Gotland since works began two months ago on the only cable to mainland.

Japan is developing supersonic glide bombs to defend remote islands
HONG KONG, 25 September 2018 (SCMP) - Japan is to develop a new generation of supersonic gliding bombs designed to give its military the ability to deliver a warhead from a safe distance if outlying islands it controls come under attack or are occupied by an enemy force.

Rare tree kangaroo reappears after vanishing for 90 years
WASHINGTON, US, 25 September 2018 (NatGeog) - The Wondiwoi tree kangaroo is so rare and elusive that it disappeared for nearly a century and was assumed to be extinct. Now it has not only been spotted, but also photographed for the first time ever in a remote New Guinea mountain range.

Deforestation-linked palm oil still finding its way into top brands
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 25 September 2018 (Mongabay) - Pledges by major brands to stop buying palm oil from companies known to destroy rainforests have failed to stop the clearance of a total area of forest the size of Los Angeles in just the last three years.

Indonesian fish farmers get early-warning system for lake pollution
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 25 September 2018 (Mongabay) - Officials in Indonesia have released a predictive calendar they hope will give fish farmers in the country’s largest lake a heads-up on water conditions that have previously killed off fish by the millions.

UK to call for 30 per cent of seas to be protected by 2030
NAIROBI, Kenya, 25 September 2018 (UNEP) - In a move hailed by campaigners as a critical step for ocean conservation, Britain will call on global leaders at the United Nations to protect 30 per cent of the world’s oceans by 2030, a trebling of the current target.

Climate change is wiping out the secret to Fiji's rugby success
NAIROBI, Kenya, 25 September 2018 (UNEP) - Namatakula is a small village in Fiji found on a long stretch of the country’s most beautiful coastline: the Coral Coast.

Maldives marine artwork destroyed
LONDON, UK, 24 September 2018 (Guardian) - A new sculptural work, Coralarium, created by artist and environmentalist Jason deCaires Taylor, was demolished last week after it was deemed anti-Islamic. The semi-submerged artwork was criticised by religious leaders and scholars in the Maldives, where Islam is the official religion.

SIDS on the frontline of climate change impact want action
SAN FRANCISCO, US, 24 September 2018 (IPS) - Caribbean leaders want larger countries to pick up the pace at which they are working to meet the climate change challenge and keep global warming from devastating whole countries, including the most vulnerable ones like those in the Caribbean.

Climate Week kicks off with a plea from island nations
NEW YORK, US, 24 September 2018 (Yahoo) - Leaders from island nations vulnerable to the impacts of climate change said Monday the whole world is facing a threat to its survival and warned that mitigation alone is an inadequate response.

Marshall Islands commit to going carbon-neutral by 2050
LONDON, UK, 24 September 2018 (Climate Home News) - The low-lying Marshall Islands released a comprehensive climate strategy to go carbon-neutral by 2050 on Monday, becoming the first island nation to do so.

What it takes to guard a giant shark sanctuary
RAROTONGA, Cook Islands, 24 September 2018 (NatGeog) - In a back room of a government ministry in the Cook Islands, a former shark smuggler keeps watch over a wall of monitors.

A green island called Guimaras
MANILA, Philippines, 24 September 2018 (BM) - There is more to Guimaras province than sweet mangoes. A biodiversity-rich island, Guimaras is home to a wide range of flora and fauna. It has a good number of endemic species, plus a diverse marine wildlife, including commercially viable fish, which has sustainably supported life not only on the island-province but in the entire Western Visayas.

Maldives election: Opposition defeats China-backed Abdulla Yameen
LONDON, UK, 24 September 2018 (BBC) - Opposition candidate Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has won the Maldives' presidential election in a surprise defeat of President Abdulla Yameen.

The biggest threat to Sandy Island's Gullah is not hurricanes
LONDON, UK, 23 September 2018 (Guardian) - A South Carolina community that has retained its African-influenced language weathered last week’s storm but faces other challenges to its future.

Campaign calls on Hawaii island tourists to be respectful
HILO, Hawaii, 22 September 2018 (AP) - The Big Island visitors bureau and Hawaii County have launched a campaign that aims to create a more conscientious tourism industry on the Big Island.

Ireland's Aran Islands: A place lost in time
LONDON, UK, 22 September 2018 (Independent) - At the end of the 19th century, playwright JM Synge escaped to the stripped back and simple life on Inishmore, Inishmaan and Inisheer. Today, little has changed on the islands.

Renault unveils France's first Smart Island on Belle-Ile-en-Mer
PARIS, France, 21 September 2018 (Renault) - Groupe Renault, Morbihan Energie, Les Cars Bleus and Enedis have joined forces to create FlexMob’île, an innovative programme aimed at accompanying the energy transition on the French island of Belle-Île-en-Mer.

Can small island nations of the Pacific survive?
SYDNEY, Australia, 21 September 2018 (Interpreter) - Whenever a Pacific island leader starts insisting that his or her country is a proudly independent, sovereign state, standing firmly on its own two feet and not needing any help or advice from anyone else, it usually means the opposite.

Plan to build airport on Japan's Ogasawara island chain advances
TOKYO, Japan, 21 September 2018 (JT) - Expectations are growing among residents of the Ogasawara Islands, an archipelago of over 30 subtropical islands some 1,000 km south of central Tokyo, that their long-awaited dream of having an airport may soon become a reality. 

Remote Marshall Islands atoll plans to become the 'next Hong Kong'
WELLINGTON, New Zealand, 21 September 2018 (RNZ) - More than 5,000 kilometres away from his home in the Marshall Islands, the Mayor of Rongelap atoll, James Matayoshi, addressed hundreds of entrepreneurs, government officials and politicians in Hong Kong.

Indonesian president signs 3-year freeze on new oil palm licenses
JAKARTA, Indonesia, 20 September 2018 (Mongabay) - Indonesian President Joko Widodo has signed a moratorium on new licenses for oil palm plantations and it will remain in place for no more than three years. Environmentalists had called for there to be no limit on its duration.

Gentle giants prove to be fast and agile
LONDON, UK, 20 September 2018 (BBC) - Every summer basking sharks gather in large numbers around small islands between Skye and Mull, off Scotland's west coast. They later migrate south to waters around Madeira and the Canary Islands off west Africa.

Indonesian province calls time-out on mining
MAUMERE, Indonesia, 19 September 2018 (Mongabay) - A newly inaugurated governor in Indonesia has called a time-out on mining in his province, citing a lack of benefits for residents from the extractive industry.

Puerto Rico bets on a coffee comeback
LONDON, UK, 19 September 2018 (BBC) - Thousands of rural families in Puerto Rico's rugged central mountains want to rebuild their traditional coffee economy after the devastation of Hurricane Maria.

Chile purse seine project nominated for conservation award
CAMBRIDGE, UK, 18 September 2018 (BirdLife) - In October, the Pink-footed Shearwaters begin to arrive on Robinson Crusoe and Mocha Islands, off the coast of Chile.

Dominica's beloved wildlife still shaky a year after Maria
ROSEAU, Dominica, 17 September 2018 (AFP) - 'Sad' parrots and 'stressed-out' frogs might be unlikely contenders for concern in the aftermath of a catastrophic natural disaster.

Storms can build reef islands in atoll regions
BOULDER, US, 17 September 2018 (ScienceDaily) - Many coral reef islands, or atolls, are created by water moving sand and gravel, piling it up into consecutive ridged layers. However, new research has uncovered a different type of island construction: storm-deposited boulders.

Space rock taken from Skye's ancient meteorite impact site
LONDON, UK, 17 September 2018 (BBC) - Geologists have raised concern about rocks being taken from a 60-million-year-old meteorite impact site in Skye.