Loss and damage implications of sea-level rise on Small Island Developing States

Date Published 2021, May 04

Authors Rosanne Martyr-Koller, Adelle Thomas, Carl-Friedrich Schleussner, Alexander Nauels, Tabea Lissner

Sea-level rise poses a significant threat to Small Island Developing States (SIDS) due to the concentration of people, assets, and infrastructure in coastal zones. This review assesses literature on key emerging topics in sea level rise including: the lasting impact of near-term mitigation on long-term sea-level rise; new global coastal vertical elevation data and their impact on existing sea-level rise projections; and the interaction of sea-level rise with other hazards, including salinization, tropical cyclones and extreme precipitation. We characterize the regional nature of sea-level rise for SIDS and highlight associated impacts and risks. Finally, we review approaches to address sea-level rise as well as limits to adaptation and resultant economic and non-economic loss and damage that may be experienced by SIDS.