Small island developing states (SIDS) are most vulnerable to climate change. It is due to the insistence of SIDS that the Paris Climate Agreement concluded in December 2015 also set a desirable target of limiting temperature rises to 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels. This chapter discusses the economic, social and environmental challenges and options for SIDS to address the risks posed by climate change, especially rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and degradation of marine ecosystems, with their consequent impacts on lives and livelihoods in the SIDS. Mitigation and adaptation measures, improving the sustainability of marine ecosystems and marine fisheries, disaster risk reduction and community-based approaches to development are critical to enhance climate resilience and sustainable development in SIDS.
The environmental conditions in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) have considerably eroded since 1960, as consequence of a combination of multiple factors or drivers, including population growth and demographic trends, the dynamics and patterns of economic growth, the weakness of the governance systems and inequity as influential socio-economic indirect drivers of environmental change in LAC. This chapter mainly refers to a subset of those socio-economic (indirect) drivers since 1960, and some expected trends for the next decades. The assessment of these drivers is critical in providing inputs in terms of data and narratives for environmental scenario-building process, as a key tool for policy-makers.The main regional priorities for LAC regarding the linkages between environment and development refer to the need of transformational changes in the regional socio-economic agenda with a long-term perspective. In the absence of such transformational changes in the prevailing production and consumption patterns in LAC, most of the adverse trends and imbalances in socio-economic development, and their interlinkages with environmental problems, would intensify towards 2050 and beyond. This situation would compromise the regional progress towards the Agenda 2030 and the accomplishment of the Sustainable Development Goals.