Do you sometimes feel like we drowning in a sea of apathy and ignorance?
The scary truth is that since the early 20th century, our planet’s mean surface temperature
has increased by about 0.8 °C (1.4 °F), with about two-thirds of the increase occurring
From the calving glaciers in Greenland to the iceberg-filled waters of Antarctica–one charismatic
news reporter after another has reported “live” from the devastation caused by climate change
and rising sea levels and most of us just seem to take it all in stride–that is until reality hits
too close to home.
Recently, while reading the Sunday New York Times, I stumbled upon an alarming report
titled “World Climate: Rising Seas” regarding several areas of the world where land masses
are literally sinking beneath the sea before our eyes–including the remote island nation of Kiribati,
located more than 1,200 miles south of Hawaii.
The situation is so dire that the government of Kiribati has already purchased 6,000 acres on the
neighboring island state of Fiji to protect its food security as the sea encroaches on arable land.
It is very likely that Kiribati’s population will have to leave their homeland behind and migrate
to another country soon.
In addition, Greenland, Panama, the Fiji Islands and the Northeast coast of the United States–
specifically Boston, New York, and Norfolk, Va–were cited as the three most vulnerable
metropolitan areas in a recent study by the U.S. Geological Survey.
Coastal areas of Baltimore, Philadelphia and Providence, R.I., could be at risk from flooding.
And due to the fact that Miami is built atop a porous limestone foundation it may also be
vulnerable to rising sea levels.
I know what is possible.
I live in the northeastern U.S. and the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy was all too
real to me.
These findings and news stories were too close for comfort.
I had to learn more.
I jumped up, ran to my computer and started Googling for answers.
According to the sea level rise analysis by climate central at surging seas.org, several things have
contributed to the rising sea, but the two most important, scientists almost universally agree,
have to do with climate change:
“Thanks to heat-trapping greenhouse gases, especially carbon dioxide (CO2) pumped into the
atmosphere by the burning of fossil fuels, global temperatures are more than one degree F
higher than they were 100 years ago.
Since water expands as it warms, the oceans take up more space than they once did, and the only
direction they can expand are up and out.
Warmer temperatures also make glaciers and land-based ice sheets melt, and make tidewater glaciers
—glaciers that reach the ocean—slide more rapidly into the sea and calve more icebergs.
In both cases, water that had been trapped on land enters the ocean, in either solid or liquid form,
making sea level rise even more.
All of this has been thoroughly documented.
Scientists understand the expansion of water very well; they have watched many hundreds of glaciers
around the world retreat over the past century; and careful measurements from the ground, air and
space show that Greenland and Antarctica have been losing ice at an accelerating rate over the past
two decades, at least.
Scientists have also watched levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere rise steadily, thanks
largely to the growing worldwide demand for energy.”
Surging Seas went on to explain that what we are seeing makes sense from a scientific perspective:
“*the increase in temperature is what you’d expect from the rise in greenhouse gases;
*the rise in sea level is what you’d expect from the rise in temperature;
*and the acceleration of sea level rise in recent decades is what you’d expect from the fact that there
are more greenhouse gases like CO2 in the atmosphere now, trapping more heat, than there were at the
beginning of the 20th century.”
8 You Tube Videos You Should Watch Now
More often than not, documentaries, videos and animation help to simplify complex topics, so I
surfed over to YouTube to view some of the videos on the subject.
I selected a few of the most illuminating from the reports to share with you.
Miami, New Orleans and New York City completely under water–it’s a very real possibility if
sea levels continue to rise. In Earth Under Water we’ll see these events unfold as leading experts
forecast how mankind will be impacted if global warming continues. They break down the science
behind these predictions and explore ways humanity could adapt including engineering vast
dams near San Francisco, or building floating cities outside of New York.
This is an overview of the different effects climate change produces in different regions
of the United States. In addition to discussing impacts already being experienced, the video
presents information on how climate scientists use specialized models and statistical techniques
to estimate how regional climates are likely to change in the future.
Future Sea Levels And Major Western Cities
Video digital animation showing sea level rise from the years 2100 to 2300 for the cities of Barcelona,
Berlin, Paris, London, San Francisco, Miami, NYC, and New Orleans.
Discovery Channel – Global Warming, What You Need To Know, with Tom Brokaw
Global warming is the rise in the average temperature of Earth’s atmosphere and oceans since
the late 19th century and its projected continuation.Warming of the climate system is unequivocal,
and scientists are more than 90% certain that it is primarily caused by increasing concentrations
of greenhouse gases produced by human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation.
Climate Change: Why you should be angry and why anger isn’t enough:
What do you think about the global warming, climate change and sea level rise?
What are you doing to reduce your carbon footprint?
Share your thoughts, opinions, suggestions and ideas with us?