Science

Scientists predict ‘catastrophic’ consequences of sea level rise over two metres

Scientists predict ‘catastrophic’ consequences of sea level rise over two metres”

Under water hidden of 1.79 million square kilometers of land, including the whole areas of London, Los Angeles, NY and Rio de Janeiro.

That might not seem much right now, but the accelerating rate of ice thinning and ice loss in the continent would contribute a much greater rise in global sea level.

This new study, based on expert opinions, projects that the real level may be around double that figure.

Global sea levels could rise by nearly 6ft by 2100 - twice as much as had previously been predicted - threatening major cities and displacing hundreds of millions of people, a study published Monday warned.

Prof Bamber added: "Such a rise in global sea level could result in land loss of 1.79 million km2, including critical regions of food production, and potential displacement of up to 187 million people". "That is about 200 times smaller than the number of people who would be displaced in a 2m sea-level rise".

Due to the accelerated melting of ice, the sea levels could rise faster too, considering that ice sheets on both Greenland and Antarctica are endangered.

These range from the Mediterranean siesta to the Vietnamese practice of building homes on stilts to protect against monsoonal rains.

Adaptation measures include large-scale infrastructure changes - such as building ocean defences.

This was under both low and high global temperature rise scenarios.

'Projections of total global SLR using this method yielded a small but meaningful probability of SLR exceeding two metres by the year 2100 under the high temperature scenario.

"In this case, we as a species and a part of the earth's ecosystems will be under serious threat", said the study's lead author, Professor Jonathan Bamber of Bristol University.

The United Nations climate panel's last major report in 2013 predicted that sea levels would rise between 52 and 98 cm (20.4 inches and 38.5 inches) by 2100 at the current trajectory.

The long-held view has been that the world's seas would rise by a maximum of just under a metre by 2100. Major cities, including NY and London, would also be threatened.

The upper limit for sea level rise by 2100 has previously been estimated between 1.7 and 3.2ft. - the range given in the fifth assessment report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the leading worldwide body for the assessment of climate change, in 2013.

The researchers found that under the extreme-case scenario, about 1.79 million square kilometers (691,120 sq miles) - an area more than three times the size of California - would be lost to the sea.

"Limiting attention to the 'likely" range, as was the case in the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report, may be misleading and will likely lead to a poor evaluation of the true risks'.



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