In this issue of Tiempo, the first of our feature articles highlights the many problems confronting the atoll state of Tuvalu. John Connell discusses the complexity between environmental change and economic development and the very real potential of mass migration for the peoples of this island nation.

Gerald Leach, taking on his role here as our bemused observer, looks askance at the projections presented by the global oil industry. He argues that there are major discrepancies between the projections of supply and demand, with real implications for the climate debate.

In the second of our feature articles, we present a report by Roger Kasperson and Jeanne Kasperson, the result of a study undertaken to assess the major vulnerability issues within the climate change context with particular attention given to those people at highest risk. They conclude that vulnerability assessment must be given higher priority if equity and social justice is to inform the climate regime.

John Hay and Martin Beniston, in the third of our feature articles, discuss the implications and causal factors of environmental change and the potential of forced migration for the peoples of small island states.

A report and brief analysis of the outcome of the Seventh Conference of the Parties, held in Marrakech, Morocco, in November 2001 is presented by Saleemul Huq. He outlines the progress made on the main negotiating issues and the outstanding points that need to be addressed at the Eighth Conference of the Parties to be held late October 2002.

Finally, Weather Eye regards the disparities and injustice that continue to prevail for many nations on the issue of debt relief.

The third in our selected excerpts from the IPCC’s 2001 Third Assessment Report, on the mitigation of climate change, will be presented in the next issue of Tiempo.