Saturday, December 29, 2007

Rising Seas?


Han Flood
Originally uploaded by starrpip.
Richard Shears reports, The world's first climate change refugees to leave island due to rising sea levels:
Within a few weeks a boat filled with wide-eyed children and tearful adults will pull out from a Pacific lagoon to escape the slow death of their island home.

The group will become the world's first refugees from the effects of global warming, leaving behind a tiny speck of land that is being slowly swallowed by the rising ocean.

Ironically, the Carteret Islanders have made what is possibly the smallest carbon footprint on the planet, yet they are the first to suffer the devastating effects of a wider, polluted world they know nothing about.
Or, are the islands slipping into the sea, tectonic instability causing them to sink?

2 comments:

  1. Nice to see your still alive. It's funny you brought this up as this was my discussion board Q&A a few weeks ago:

    By the year 2050 the world can expect a estimated 150 million Environmental refugees to be displaced from their homes as the seas rise, in fact Tuvalu, an island nation that lies north of Fiji has already begun planning to evacuate it's citizens to New Zealand when the time comes. So where does leave the rest of us? According to the EPA (1) the world could expect a rise in the waters of anywhere between 15 and 30 centimeters (6 inches to 1 foot) by the time 2050 rolls around, this is from a 1995 report. Though this doesn't sound like much, we can put into perspective a little better by stating that the current state of Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge in Maryland could be cut in almost half, if not by 2050, then most definitely by 2100- this doesn't go over well with the treehuggers in the world. Another out of the way area that will be effected by this raise in water depth will be my hometown of Marysville, Washington. Though I realize it's no Florida , it too will be underwater at just one meter (3). By current calculation this shouldn't happen till about 2200, however the reality is there already. However, in the short-term, areas like the southern coast of Florida shouldespecial be warned as their own University of Miami's Harold Wanless spoke to the House Environmental Resources Council and warns that the state could look forward to a 1 ½-foot rise to its oceans in the next 50 years (4), that a 50% increase from that of 10 years ago. By that estimation the lowest portions of Florida, to include the Keys will begin to loose some of its real estate.


    (1) http://yosemite.epa.gov/oar/globalwarming.nsf/content/ResourceCenterPublicationsProbability.html
    (2) http://geology.usgs.gov/connections/fws/landscapes/blackwater_model.htm
    (3) http://flood.firetree.net/?ll=43.3251,-101.6015&z=13&m=7
    (4) http://www.miamiherald.com/news/columnists/fred_grimm/story/330961.html

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