Fastest Disappearing Natural Wonders
The lowest lying nation on earth (at its highest elevation, it’s the same height as NBA star Yao Ming), the Republic of Maldives is the canary in the coal mine for global warming. The country’s president, Mohamed Nasheed, is determined to set a good example: he aims to rid the country of fossil fuel, burning coconut husks for power and establishing massive wind and solar plants in an effort to make the country carbon neutral by 2020. In case that doesn’t work, land has been purchased in neighboring countries to house the country’s 380,000 inhabitants who would be made homeless by a rise in sea level of just three feet.
How to See It Now: Stay at Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru, a 48-villa property built on the footprint of an existing resort with the intention of preserving trees and preventing beach erosion.