Going to Extremes for Climate Change

When I was little, one on my favorite pool games was playing ‘tea party’ under water. My friends and I would blow out all our air and sink to the bottom of the pool for a brief moment, bobbing cross-legged and pretending to sip tea at an imaginary table as our cheeks puffed out like blowfish.

Thumbnail image for tom_underwater.jpgI really wish I had a picture of me as a little kid playing underwater to better depict our tea parties. But since I don’t, here’s one of my friend Tom, taken when we went snorkeling in Malta, spring 2008. Not exactly sipping tea, but close enough.

Apparently, I’m not the only one who has a love of underwater assemblies. The Maldives government recently held a cabinet meeting underwater (no really, snorkels and all!) to promote awareness of climate change, in anticipation of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, Sweden next month. This island nation off the coast of India is pretty tiny (it’s less than twice the size of Washington, DC), but it has been making news in recent years due to its geographic significance: It’s the flattest country in the world! This bit of trivia may not seem important, but folks are worried that rising sea levels could soon wipe the low-lying Maldives off the map for good. President Mohammed Nasheed wants the world to take notice, so he and his cabinet members donned SCUBA suits, set up tables, grabbed a camera crew, and submerged 20 feet–all in the name of mitigating global climate change. Crazy? Perhaps. Blog-inspiring? Definitely!

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