"Take the 6 million people who live in south Florida today and divide them into two groups: those who live less than six and a half feet above the current high tide line, and everybody else. The numbers slice nearly evenly. Heads or tails: call it in the air. If you live here, all you can do is hope that when you put down roots your choice was somehow prophetic."
Their analysis of home prices versus flood risk reveals that from 2007 to 2017, homes at “high” or “very high” risk of extreme flooding saw a 4.8 to 5.6 percent drop in price, while homes at the lowest risk saw an 8.4 to 9.6 percent rise.
“The situation in 2070 — roughly 50 years away — is a calamity. Sea levels will have risen nearly half a meter (20 inches, or 1.6 feet) since 2000. Flooding of coastal cities will be costing the world more than $1 trillion a year.”
We have yet a lot to learn about the dynamics of the way the oceans absorb global warming.
Is this the beginning of the positive feedback effect. Does anyone know how it ends?
As scientists refine their models, the outlook only worsens. We need to start planning for the scenarios forecasted.
Sea levels would rise between 70cm and 1.2m by 2300 even if the Paris Agreement greenhouse gas emissions targets were urgently met, researchers say. Every five-year delay in achieving zero net global carbon dioxide emissions this century would add 20cm .... Read More
In a remote region of Antarctica known as Pine Island Bay, 2,500 miles from the tip of South America, two glaciers hold human civilization hostage.
Stretching across a frozen plain more than 150 miles long, these glaciers, named Pine Island and Thwaites, have marched steadily for millennia toward the Amundsen Sea, part of the vast Southern Ocean. Further inland, the glaciers widen into a two-mile-thick reserve of ice covering an area the size of Texas.
There’s no doubt this ice will melt as the world warms. The vital question is when. More
Nestled between the Arctic and Atlantic oceans is Greenland, a slab of ice and rock that has caused more controversy than one might expect from the least densely populated country in thew world. For a long time, the Mercator map misrepresented Greenland as a giant land mass almost as big as Africa, but a 1970s reassessment cut it down to size, showing that it’s actually only about one-fourteenth of the continent’s area.
Now, in a cruel coincidence, new NASA maps show that Greenland is actually — physically — shrinking, and it’s happening at a much quicker pace than scientists once thought.
On Wednesday, in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, a team of NASA scientists together with collaborators from over 30 institutions published the most accurate high-resolution maps of Greenland’s bedrock and coastal seafloor, using data from NASA’s OMG campaign — short for Ocean Melting Greenland, but apt for describing its scary findings. The maps revealed some terrible news for the country’s 54,100 inhabitants: While scientists had long known that some of the glaciers comprising the icy landmass were melting because of climate change, it now appears that up to four times the original number of glaciers are under threat.
"To the Dutch, what’s truly incomprehensible, he (Mr. van Wingerden) added, is New York after Hurricane Sandy, where too little has been done to prepare for the next disaster. People in the Netherlands believe that the places with the most people and the most to lose economically should get the most protection.
The idea that a global economic hub like Lower Manhattan flooded during Hurricane Sandy, costing the public billions of dollars, yet still has so few protections, leaves climate experts here dumbfounded."
Tens of thousands of homes and businesses in Melbourne face a bigger risk of tidal flooding by century's end, and major roads, tram routes and industrial areas could disappear under water due to future sea level rises, new modelling shows.
The updated modelling of possible sea level rises caused by climate change predicts Victoria's coastline could be hit by sea level rises of two metres or more by 2100, due to the rapid melting of ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland.
A two-metre rise would flood several low-lying suburbs in Melbourne including South Melbourne, Albert Park, Port Melbourne, Southbank, Docklands, Altona, Williamstown, Elwood, St Kilda, Seaford, Carrum, Bonbeach and Aspendale. Large areas in Geelong and the seaside towns of Barwon Heads, Queenscliff and Point Lonsdale would also be heavily inundated at high tide by century's end, it is predicted.
“Pessimists selling to optimists.” That’s how one former Florida coastal property owner describes the current state of the market in a must-read Bloomberg story.
Right now, science and politics don’t favor the optimists. The disintegration of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets is speeding up, providing increasing evidence we are headed for the worst-case scenario of sea level rise — three to six feet (or more) by 2100.
The impacts are already visible in South Florida. “Tidal flooding now predictably drenches inland streets, even when the sun is out, thanks to the region’s porous limestone bedrock,” explains Bloomberg. “Saltwater is creeping into the drinking water supply.”
At the same time, President Trump is working to thwart both domestic and international climate action while slashing funding for coastal adaptation and monitoring. E&E News reported earlier this month that the EPA has already “disbanded its climate change adaptation program” and reassigned all the workers.
The trouble with Thwaites, which is one of the largest glaciers on the planet, is that it's also what scientists call "a threshold system." That means instead of melting slowly like an ice cube on a summer day, it is more like a house of cards: It's stable until it is pushed too far, then it collapses. When a chunk of ice the size of Pennsylvania falls apart, that's a big problem. It won't happen overnight, but if we don't slow the warming of the planet, it could happen within decades. And its loss will destabilize the rest of the West Antarctic ice, and that will go too. Seas will rise about 10 feet in many parts of the world; in New York and Boston, because of the way gravity pushes water around the planet, the waters will rise even higher, as much as 13 feet. "West Antarctica could do to the coastlines of the world what Hurricane Sandy did in a few hours to New York City," explains Richard Alley, a geologist at Penn State University and arguably the most respected ice scientist in the world. "Except when the water comes in, it doesn't go away in a few hours – it stays."
Just down the coast from Donald Trump's weekend retreat, the residents and businesses of south Florida are experiencing regular episodes of water in the streets. In the battle against rising seas, the region – which has more to lose than almost anywhere else in the world – is becoming ground zero.
A cyclone the size of Debbie could have catastrophic consequences on the Gold Coast, new modelling has shown, as climate change pushes cyclones further south and puts tens of billions of dollars worth of infrastructure at risk.
Actuaries, who predict and model scenarios for banks and insurers, have warned properties could become "uninsurable" as premiums rise to meet environmental challenges. Debbie devastated northern Queensland and swept floods into NSW which caused $1 billion in damage, forced 30,000 people to evacuate and took two lives. More
Rising sea levels pose huge financial, economic and humanitarian risks, as shown by the Climate Council’s latest report, Counting the Costs: Climate Change and Coastal Flooding. If the world ignores the problem, by mid-century rising seas could cost the world more than a trillion dollars a year as floods and storm surges hit.
The journal Climatic Change has published a special edition of review papers discussing major natural hazards in Australia. This article by The Conversation, which was written in November 2016, is one of a series looking at those threats.
Australia is a huge continent, but a coastal nation. About 80% of Australians live within 50km of the coast, and a sea-level rise of 1.1 metres (a high-end scenario for 2100) would put about A$63 billion (in 2008 dollars) worth of residential buildings at risk.
Anyone who lives along Sydney’s northern beaches, especially in Collaroy, saw at first hand the damage the ocean can wreak on coastal properties when the coastline was hit by a severe east coast low during a king tide in June.