NEW YORK (AP) — Many of the 38 members recognized by the United Nations as small island developing states are known for their stunning coral reefs, pristine beaches and dire imperilment by climate change. These islands are dependent on tourism, which itself is a significant driver of climate change. With their economies devastated by the coronavirus pandemic, these countries are looking to a return of tourism to salvage their livelihoods. At the same time, they are issuing increasingly stark clarion calls for action on climate change at the United Nations General Assembly as rising sea levels threaten to drown them before the end of the century.
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