Posted by: Dr Pano Kroko | November 19, 2012

The hassle is on…

Sea level rise is one of the most harmful consequences of climate change, and its effects are already being felt in coastal cities across the globe and in your neighborhood, like in New York’s Manhattan island.

Historic changes in sea level can indicate how it will change in future. Most of our sea-level records are based on the chemical make-up of sediment cores, which are hard to date ‐ estimates can be thousands of years out. As a result, it is unclear how soon sea level started rising after Earth warmed in prehistoric times, how quickly it rose and what we can expect in the future.

Five years ago, the last report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change painted a gloomy picture of our planet’s future. As climate scientists gather evidence for the next report, due in 2014, we give you some reasons why things are looking even grimmer, than expected and why we need to hassle:

The planet currently is able to absorb only half of our CO2emissions. All the signs are in that it won’t continue to be able to do even this for much longer.

And even if we stopped emitting CO2 completely today – still – we won’t be able to avoid climate disaster. Because in fact we will still be living with increasing emissions because of all the feed back loop mechanisms of releasing greenhouse gas emissions we set in motion over the last fifty years…

Agriculture and food scarcity are two huge issues, because although global warming was expected to boost food production – in fact – the opposite has happened.  And instead, food staples production is diminished, and therefore food prices are soaring as the effects of extreme weather kick in with drought destroying the wheat, corn and rice productive heart lands and strategic food supply stocks diminishing dangerously.

And when some of the worst climate predictions are realised, vast swathes of the globe would become desertified — too hot for humans to survive — because agriculture would become impossible and therefore human living untenable…

Complicating things further, is Greenland’s rapid loss of ice cover, which means we’re in for a sea level rise of at least 1.5 – 3 metres by 2050, and possibly much more…

The thick sea ice in the Arctic Ocean was not expected to melt until the end of the century. Yet this summer the Arctic was in places almost ice free and navigable via the Northwest passage. Now if current trends continue, summer ice could be completely gone in a decade’s time.

Lower Manhattan near Wall Street, is still pumping seawater out of the subway tunnels and underground garages. It has been weeks since Sandy Superstorm, ripped through the North-Eastern United States, killing more than 100 people and leaving much of New York City underwater and now seems that this will be a repeat performance to outlast the best of Broadway’s musicals…

And as this gets repeated across the globe ripping to shreds coastal cities where 80% of human settlements are – here is what we are looking at:

Current State of the Art research and scientific study suggests that the most alarming predictions of sea-level rises cannot be ruled out. As a matter of fact we have accelerated the process and worsened the worst that Nature can deliver to us —  by our own climate warming interferences, consistent denialism and short term thinking.

It is well known and carefully documented through scientific method research, and corroborated by geological evidence, that — in the past 150,000 years — sea levels rose fastest when glacial periods ended and the large ice sheets began shrinking. This of course also makes Common Sense and we have the clear evidence that has happened twice over the past 150,000 years. Time that we as humans have been around to record it and pass it down the generations in all of our religious myths…

Let’s heed the message of these instructive “myths” from Bible’s Noah story, to the Hopi Indian PaleoClimate stories and Ice Age melt lore all the way to the Bhagavad Gita’s sunken cities in the Bay of Benghal — because now we are facing the perfect trifecta of dynamic Climate Change with apocalyptic effects…

And although at these times of our distant past, all the sea levels rose at least 1.2 metres per century, and perhaps even 2 metres per century — our expected levels are far worse than that and faster rising.

Yours,

Pano

PS:

Studies have suggested that we could expect sea level to rise by several metres per century…

Got a boat handy?

 

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