Sea Level Rise

This is probably not the first time you’ve heard that sea levels are rising.  And this report is three years old.  What is interesting are the words, “faster than predicted.”  A third of Pakistan is under water.  California has both wild fires and flooding.  And the Greenland glacier melted faster this past month than at any time in history – and that glacier alone will increase sea levels by 10 cm by the end of the century.  From a more recent report from The Guardian, that sea levels will rise …


” … even if the world met the Paris

agreement goal of holding tempera-

ture rises to no more than 2C, and

would eventually raise sea levels by

2.5 metres at that level of heating.”


Here’s the three-year-old report.  As with many trends, they seem to happen faster than annalists predict.  You might wonder, “What can I do, personally, about this global problem?”  I’ll add comments & suggestions afterwards.

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Global sea levels are rising even faster

than predicted, says UN’s climate committee.

MIT Technology Review

25 September 2019


Sea levels could be around a meter higher and the Arctic could be ice-free in the summer by 2100, the UN’s climate science committee has concluded.

Sea level fears: This is 10 centimeters higher than the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change predicted six years ago. The change is because Antarctica is melting faster than expected. The revised estimate could be hugely significant to the 600 million people around the world who live less than 10 meters above sea level.

More bad news: Extreme sea level events, like storm surges, which used to happen once a century, will occur every year in many parts of the world by 2050, no matter whether greenhouse gas emissions are curbed or not, the IPCC said.

Impact on food: The report also warns that as the ocean gets hotter, less oxygenated and more acidic, it threatens a vast loss of marine life. This could be dangerous for the billions of people around the world who rely on seafood as their primary source of protein.

Up the pressure: The study arrives amid rising activism over climate change, and in the wake of a UN climate summit which included a lot of talk, but not much action, from the world’s biggest emitters.


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Looking at the last comments from the report … “lot of talk, but not much action” … the biggest emitters tend to be corporations.  Corporations, through their political action committees, (PACs), tend to control political leaders with their campaign contributions.  As the sign of this problem has been evident for many decades now, it’s likely safe to say that the solution will not come from government or corporate leaders.

Past civilizations that once thrived, later vanished when they no longer had the resources to feed their populations.  We already have increased rates of crop and sea life loss … and famine in many parts of the world.  If we don’t change the trend, Earth will soon have a far smaller population of survivors – small enough to survive with our natural resources.  Or … we could, collectively, begin to take corrective action, now.

Not too long ago, in history, we heated homes with wood and, where available, peat bog bricks.  Gradually we shifted to coal, though it led to massive amounts of soot everywhere, and air pollution.  Now we’ve evolved to oil and natural gas, which are somewhat cleaner.  But … the expanded use of gas for transportation, has led us to climate change that may wipe us out.

We have the technology to heat and cool and power our homes – and drive our cars – without the use of fossil fuels.  But unless we can achieve a mass transition away from fossil fuels, we’ll not be able to change the trends leading our current civilization towards extinction.  Adding D’s comments …


“People really need to think about where they live and, if the sea is rising, what they need to do about it.  People move to the coasts because the oceans are beautiful, seductive, and calming.  And yet the oceans – and low-lying inland areas that are flood-prone – can also be terribly destructive.  One needs to think about where they live and if they are protected from ocean rise. 

“One can modify a home and make it easier to weather storms.  At some point homes will not be able to survive the rising tides of the ocean or major flooding.  Only individual homeowners can determine if and when it is time to move.  We do want people to protect themselves. 

“People also need to really connect with a farmer who grows vegetables for human consumption.  You can meet such a person at a farmers’ market. 

“Also, people need to prepare as they see appropriate.  This could include making a connection to a local farmer, or beginning to grow your own food, or raising your house up so you could stay there for twenty more years, or relocating entirely.  It could also include changing to solar power for your home and car.

 “It is healthy to feel you are in some control; fear sucks energy from people.”

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