FAILURE to act on climate change risks put prosperity out of reach of millions of people in the developing world, says World Bank's regional East Asia Pacific vice president Axel van Trotsenburg.
In the face of rising tide, he said, this also threatened to roll back decades of development.
"It is not too late to hold warming to 2 degrees Celsius but this will require commitment and decisive action from a range of global partners to reduce emissions," he said.
"In Vanuatu, we are partnering with the European Union to encourage farmers to introduce climate resilient livestock and crops, and implementing disaster risk management programs in some 35 communities.
"A tsunami warning system is being installed for Port Vila and Luganville and national hazard response systems are being strengthened."
He said an adaptation project in Kiribati with Australia and New Zealand was helping the country improve water management.
He said initial improvements in the capital, South Tarawa, was increasing bulk water supply by 20 per cent.
"It is also working with communities to build seawalls and has planted over 37,000 mangroves to protect coastlines," he said.
"The children of the Pacific deserve our best efforts so they can grow up to live on the same soil as their parents and grandparents."
Mr van Trotsenburg was expected to travel to the Marshall Islands for a meeting on the Majuro Declaration for Climate Leadership, to galvanise a new wave of climate action.