In New Caledonia, rising water levels “an obsession” | AFP

“When I sleep at night, I wake up, I am always thinking about the rising waters, it has become an obsession,” says Poeta Carolo, spokesperson for the St. Joseph chiefdom, north of the island of Ouvéa in New Caledonia. Called “the island closest to paradise” thanks to its ribbon of white sand that runs along its west coast and its turquoise waters, Ouvéa has been partly listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 2008. But due to rising sea levels and sand depleted by industrial projects, its 25 km of beaches no longer compare with those on which the Kanak leader spent his youth.

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