Larry sharpens awareness, brings problem into focus: More than 2000 people from at least six separate communities could lose their land and livelihoods as global warming pushes the shoreline ever closer. The communities most affected have applied to the State Emergency Service for disaster relief after Cyclone Larry exacerbated the problem last month, causing widespread destruction.
Island residents cannot retreat from a four-sided attack: Coconut Island elder Olandi Pearson has seen erosion and king tides take their toll over the years, but never to such an extent as now. His nephew Cedric Pearson, the island council’s deputy chairman, said: "This time it is coming from all four sides, and no one has seen that before. I have personally seen about 60 metres of land disappear since the year 2000."