Addu Atoll is the southernmost atoll in the Maldives archipelago. Currently, it is under threat of environmental destruction due to the interests of big business.
In 2020, Addu Atoll was declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and therefore, achieved the status of an area of significant environmental importance and value, worthy of special protection.
In 2020, the Maldives also declared a Climate Emergency due to the impacts of global heating and climate change.
As we all know, Maldives is at the frontline of the climate crisis!
Despite this precarious situation, on 9 June 2021, an announcement was made that US$75 million will be spent to "reclaim" Addu Atoll, by dredging 6.7 million cubic meters of sand from the atoll basin to create 231 hectares of land which will effectively destroy nature, biodiversity and the natural defences and resilience of the atoll. The project will dredge almost all available sand within the atoll basin created over thousands of years from living organisms. This sand is a valuable, finite natural resource that cannot be replaced. Recent research also shows that sand dredging increases the climate change vulnerability of islands.
The project also aims to create four artificial islands to build resorts for big businesses. This practice has destroyed many reef ecosystems and wildlife habitats in the Maldives in recent years. This is ecologically disastrous and makes our islands unsafe, because our natural reefs, lagoons and ecosystems ARE our natural defence systems. They are necessary for our safety and security in the face of climate change!
Please join us to call on the Maldives authorities to stop this ecocide and the irreversible destruction of Addu Atoll.