AuthorTopic: The Oceans are Coming? BFD, I got other Worries.  (Read 4000 times)

Offline RE

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The Oceans are Coming? BFD, I got other Worries.
« on: July 26, 2015, 02:11:20 AM »


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Published on the Doomstead Diner on July 26, 2015



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Order the problems we face in Collapse from the most pressing ones to the least pressing ones in need of addressing First



  • Sea Level Rise


  • Atmospheric Carbon Content


  • Monetary System Collapse


  • Geopolitical Conflict/War


  • Fossil Fuel Energy Depletion


  • Human Population Overshoot


  • Loss of Liberty/Police State


  • Terrorism


  • Nuclear Power Plants/Spent Fuel


  • Food Production


  • Drought


  • Population Migrations/Refugees



https://chemtrailsplanet.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/james-hansen-nasa-mug.jpgThe Big Climate Newz of the week was that James Hansen, considered by many to be the #1 Climate Scientist in the world released his latest report on the crappy state of the earth. Now, the report is up online and downloadable for Free in .pdf form, all 121 pages of it. You can peruse it at your leisure, but if you have been following the “climate debate” for any period of time and are not in a state of complete denial, it's not going to tell you anything real new that you don't intuitively know already, that the climate is changing and that change appears to be accelerating. In nice scientific fashion, Jim documents this, and about the only difference from earlier studies is that the tone gets increasingly more strident, trying to get people to DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!



This follows on the heels of the Pope's recent encyclical, and Moonbeam Goobernator of Sunny and Very Dry CA Jerry Brown's warning that climate change is going to fuck us up if we don't DO SOMETHING. For Collapse Blogosphere fans, you can add to that Guy McPherson's uber-doom prediction of Human Extinction by 2030 or so.



http://crooksandliars.com/files/imagecache/node_primary/primary_image/15/06/pope2650.jpg



Now again, while the rhetoric is getting more strident, this isn't a whole lot different than what we heard from Rachel Carson with Silent Spring in the 1960's, or from the Club of Rome with Limits to Growth in the 1970s. You never got any real changes out of those studies, why would you expect this will be any different?



The Industrial model isn't run by any one person or even a group of persons that can put the brakes on it. It's a set of systems that built up over time, with the choices made for that build up not made by the population at large, but rather by a few people in positions of control of credit and the war machine. The problem here is that the choices made in the past cannot now be reversed, at least not without a tremendous amount of social dislocation at the very least, and really in many places dependent on these system a whole lot of dead people. Which you will get eventually no matter what, but both individuals and entire civilizations tend to try to put of dying as long as they can, by whatever means they can.



The biggest problems I see with the Hansen study are twofold. First of all, even if you accept the theory that the current climate problems are generated mainly by fossil fuel burning, can stopping that burning now reverse the changes made already? This doesn't seem likely now. There is evidence of a 40 year lag time between when the fossil fuel gets burned and its end effect on the environment. There is also evidence that if you took the particulates created by burning fossil fuels out of the air, this would actually cause more rapid warming because more sunlight would make it through. Beyond that, Hansen doesn't address the corollary problem, which is that if you quit burning fossil fuels on a dime, even if it were possible to flick it off like a light switch, precisely how would we run all the systems that depend on this energy these days, like your electric lights, the sewage treatment plants in the Big Shities, etc?



The second major problem is the timeline question. Again, accepting Hansen's results here, even at the most rapid of glacial melting, it's going to take 20 years or more for sea levels to rise even 10m or so. The prospect of all these coastal cities underwater by say 2050 is certainly horrifying, but the issue is we have other more pressing problems likely to hit even before that.



First of is the ongoing collapse of the monetary system. This is the “glue” that holds many of the rest of our systems together, the energy extraction bizness, the transportation system, the electric grid and the communications network. Shut down the fossil fuel economy, the monetary system implodes right behind it. How are all the rest of those systems supposed to function here without fossil fuels and without a monetary system to do the trade and keep the stuff moving around?



Next up, you have the food production and distribution problem itself, affected by energy availability, population overshoot, topsoil degradation and water availability. To begin with, the huge ag yields of the industrial era come from fossil fuel based fertilizers. Quit using the fossil fuels to keep the sea level from rising, poof your yields drop. How exactly are you going to get what food you can still grow from the fields to the people living in the big shities before they are underwater? How exactly are you going to pump what water is left in Lake Mead over to the AG fields in central CA? If you follow Jim's prescription for saving the world from SLR, even if it could be implemented and would work (neither of which is very likely), then you run into the problem that everything else breaks down BEFORE the glaciers have a chance to melt enough for a 10M sea level rise. So why even bother with this discussion and political controversy? It's a WASTE OF FUCKING TIME!



Forget the Seawater arriving problem in 50 years, you have the Freshwater leaving problem ALREADY hitting!  Just about everybody knows about the problems they have in sunny & dry Califronia already, most of the Doom community knows about Sao Paolo in Brasil, but then on top of THAT you have the fact the Ogalala Aquifer is drying up.




The Great Plains’ invisible water crisis








The prairie wind buffeted Brant Peterson as he stood in a half-dead field of winter wheat.



In front of him, a red-winged blackbird darted in and out of a rippling green sea of healthy wheat.






 



 



 



 



 



 




 



 



 



 



 



 



 




Behind him, yellowed stalks rotted in the ground.



The reason for the stark contrast was buried 600 feet under Peterson’s dusty boots: Only part of the field – the thriving part – had been irrigated by water pumped at that depth from the ancient Ogallala Aquifer, one of the largest underground sources of fresh water in the world.



“If not for irrigation that whole field would look like this,” Peterson said, nudging the dead wheat with the toe of his boot.



But irrigation soon could end on Peterson’s southwest Kansas farm. The wells under his land in Stanton County are fast running dry as farmers and ranchers across the Great Plains pump the Ogallala faster than it can be replenished naturally.



 



 



 



 



 



 




 



 



 



 



 



 







Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/nation-world/national/article28505764.html#storylink=cpy


You need to accept a few facts of life here:



1) The glaciers are likely to melt and sea levels will rise no matter what is done over the near to medium term.



2) You can't get a political consensus on what to do about that in any case.



3) Other Economic, Geopolitical and Climate problems are going to hit before ocean rise is a major problem.



 



So then you have to decide what you CAN do in the face of this



1) Where can I choose to live, if I have some kind of choice?



2) What will I need to survive as things spin down?



3) How long do I have before it gets REALLY bad where I currently am?



http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_-b-kpMH_7eM/StvRv1N6VKI/AAAAAAAABKE/B1TpafkTl3g/s400/venice.jpgJim took 112 pages to write his report, I can synopsize it all with one acronym, FUBAR, Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition. There is no way SLR is getting solved now, I doubt it was even possible to prevent this back when Rachel Carson wrote Silent Spring, and that is even assuming it's all Anthropogenic, which I don't think it is. It doesn't matter though whether this is primarily driven by Anthropogenic causation or Geotectonic causation, because either way the trajectory is basically the same, the sea levels will rise and a significant portion of Homo Saps currently walking the earth will no longer be doing so in a few years, or at most decades of time. Those who are still ambulatory won't be located where these current coastal cities are, which should indicate to you that a preponderance of the dieoff will come form these places. That is CFS.



I think a lot of people bog down here when presented with these BIG ISSUES of climate change that are going to play out over the next century or even faster than that over the next 50 years, complete with all the Scientific Documentation. For Jim Hansen as a Chicken Little on this one, instead of “The Sky is Falling”, it's “The Oceans are Coming!”. Which IMHO I think he is correct on, but we have much more pressing problems that will hit before those do, possibly in the next couple of years but no longer than a decade for many of them.



https://perrystreetpalace.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/tardigrade.jpgThe other big problem you have is many people get overwhelmed by the scope of all the problems, considering it all so bad that absolutely nobody can survive, all the habitat on earth for other living creatures we depend on will be destroyed and we'll all go extinct, possibly leaving the globe to be taken over by the Tardigrades for a few millenia until they get fried too.



This is of course a possibility, but given the cycles the Earth has already gone through, and the fact populations do suffer knockdowns but then bounce back later, it's sure not written in stone here that Homo Sap will go extinct, and not on the 15 year timeline of Guy McPherson to be sure. If you go up in latitude, average temperature decreases. If you go up in altitude it does also. So really all one relatively small group of people needs to do is find one little valley somewhere to live in balance with the nature that surrounds them while the rest of the earth heals itself, which granted might take a few millenia, but seems likely to occur based on the geologic history.



75,000 years ago when the Supervolcano Toba went ballistic, the population of Homo Saps was knocked down to 10,000 Human Souls, or 1000 Breeding Pairs.  There is a decent amount of debate over whether Toba actually was the cause of this, but the genetic record is pretty clear, and CFS should tell you that we started from a relatively small group of people, or even incipient people going back into pre-history far enough to Austrolopithecus and so forth.



http://cdn.radiolive.co.nz/radiolive/AM/2012/11/10/31896/Fat%20Lady%20Sings.pngFrom that small number, we bounced up to the current 7B, much of that current population fed on the stored thermodynamic energy in fossil fuels. We'll most likely never get that big in population again, but it is still no sure thing that we will go extinct either. It aint' OVAH till the Fat Lady Sings



http://cdn.abclocal.go.com/images/wpvi/cms_exf_2007/news/health/8904563_600x338.jpgFor the individual inside the Industrial Economy right now, it is much like riding a Chinese Bullet train headed for a Bridge across the Yangtze River you know will not support the train. You know it is destined to crash. Your problem is you don't know the exact speed at which the train is moving or the exact distance between where it is now and where the bridge is. So you can't know exactly how long it will take to get there. Right now, they are serving really nice Lobster & Filet Mignon in the Dining Car too, and who wants to leave that?  Especially in order to leave you have to jump off a moving train into unknown territory, and convince your loved ones to jump with you too!



So it is pretty hard to quit on it, and really about all the people I have run into over the years who have quit are single and male, with a few exceptions of couples trying subsitence farming. That's obviously not rewilding, and in about all cases still relies on many inputs from the Industrial economy as well. There are not any cookbook solutions to this problem, but I do caution against obsessing over Sea Level Rise as the most pressing problem we face here, it is not. It can give you some window into deciding where you do NOT want to be, which obviously is any low lying Big Shity, but there are a few other obviously poor spots, like Las Vegas and Sao Paulo also. Of course, even Alaska isn't looking so great these days with all the wildfires, though we have had some rain and they have calmed down a bit. Still generally better than most places though.



http://d9x2mg69xznqq.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/alaska-wildfire-600x337.jpg



Wherever you do end up, your survival will depend on luck and circumstance as much or more than any prepping you can do, but you can't do without the prepping either. It is also a pointless exercise to obsess about Extinction, which was always an inevitability, only the timeline was a question mark. All Living things Die, all Civilizations Collapse, all Species go Extinct. Perhaps if we had more Wisdom or Sapience as George Mobus on Question Everything puts it, we might have been able to keep this civilization going a bit longer than it did, but I doubt it. There are thermodynamic imperatives at work here that supercede the sapience of any individual, and we are only as smart as the whole network we create, which is only as smart as the dumbest node in there, and there are a lot of dumb ones out there, even in control of the levers of power.



Where we will be as a species in 10 years, 20 years or a century is anybody's guess. Where we will not be is no guess at all, we won't be Star Treking the Universe, that is certain. Where you or your progeny will be, also uncertain, but all you really can do as an individual is live another day, until you can't anymore. The imperative of life is to keep living as long as you can.  You are not responsible or in control of what occurs to the entire race of Homo Saps no matter what you do, what choices you make. On the eternal level, you are only responsible for your own morality and your own ethics, and whatever they were or are, those are your legacy for your life. They will remain on your balance sheet for all eternity. Choose them well.



http://www.buildaltars.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/ocean_lg.jpg


SAVE AS MANY AS YOU CAN

Offline RE

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Charleston does not look like a good place to own a house anymore, unless it's a houseboat.

I wonder how Surly did in Norfolk?

RE

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2015/10/27/historic-high-tides-from-supermoon-and-sea-level-rise-flood-the-southeast-coast/

Historic high tides from supermoon and sea level rise flood the Southeast coast

SAVE AS MANY AS YOU CAN

Offline azozeo

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Charleston does not look like a good place to own a house anymore, unless it's a houseboat.

I wonder how Surly did in Norfolk?

RE

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2015/10/27/historic-high-tides-from-supermoon-and-sea-level-rise-flood-the-southeast-coast/

Historic high tides from supermoon and sea level rise flood the Southeast coast




http://beforeitsnews.com/military/2015/10/3-chinese-warships-to-florida-port-on-nov-3-2-are-battleships-2475266.html


Maybe this is why China is sending 3 "Love-Boats" to Florida next week.
Social unrest due to flooding or ? from our little friend  :icon_sunny:
The Chinese have no problem firing on grandma if shes rioting
Oh, let the sun beat down upon my face
And stars fill my dream
I’m a traveler of both time and space
To be where I have been
To sit with elders of the gentle race
This world has seldom seen
They talk of days for which they sit and wait
All will be revealed

Online Surly1

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Charleston does not look like a good place to own a house anymore, unless it's a houseboat.

I wonder how Surly did in Norfolk?

RE

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2015/10/27/historic-high-tides-from-supermoon-and-sea-level-rise-flood-the-southeast-coast/

Historic high tides from supermoon and sea level rise flood the Southeast coast


From this latest, barely a peep. And no effect, which is very different from earlier in the month when this was the view from my porch:


The forecast for today promises high winds and heavy rain due to a happy confluence between remnants of Patricia and another system:
An intensifying area of low pressure will deliver a trifecta of inclement weather to portions of the Midwest and East through Thursday. Those impacts include strong winds, soaking rainfall that will contribute to commuting hassles, and even a little snow.

The area of low pressure that will strengthen is the one that brought heavy rain, gusty winds and coastal flooding to parts of the Gulf Coast the last few days, and formed partially in response to the mid- and upper-level remnants of Hurricane Patricia this past weekend. As that low moves northward, it will get an injection of energy from a weather system moving into the Midwest, allowing it to strengthen significantly.



It's just weather. Biggest downside is that high winds bring down trees and power lines, resulting in internet outages.
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Offline RE

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It's just weather. Biggest downside is that high winds bring down trees and power lines, resulting in internet outages.

SAT PHONE!  :icon_mrgreen:


RE
SAVE AS MANY AS YOU CAN

Online Surly1

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It's just weather. Biggest downside is that high winds bring down trees and power lines, resulting in internet outages.

SAT PHONE!  :icon_mrgreen:


RE

Hah!
I had that coming.
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Offline RE

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Ground Zero of Climate Change: Coastal and Island Nations of the Asia-Pacific
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2015, 06:53:06 AM »
Ground Zero of Climate Change: Coastal and Island Nations of the Asia-Pacific

The Asia-Pacific Journal, Vol. 13, Issue. 48, No. 2, December 14, 2015

Tarique Niazi

Editor’s Note:

This is the second article in a three-part special issue titled “Pacific Islands, Extreme Environments.” Edited by Andrea E. Murray. Niazi provides an in-depth case study of the Philippines’ ongoing devastation following Superstorm Haiyan in 2013. Building on Kelman’s discussion of shifting post-disaster scales of governance (national, subnational, and regional), Niazi expands the conversation to include geologic scales of violence wrought by volcanoes, typhoons, earthquakes, and tsunamis. The author demonstrates how coastal and island nations in the Asia-Pacific, including Bangladesh, Maldives, Philippines and Sri Lanka, have contributed among the least to climate change, but are already suffering the worst of its global consequences.

Typhoon Haiyan: When Do You Say "It's Time To Start Talking About Climate Change?" (Media Matters for America)

 

Superstorm Haiyan made a devastating landfall in the east-central Philippines on November 8, 2013, leaving behind a trail of death and destruction that draped the whole country in a pall of grief. The Philippines has since been reeling from this disaster. The typhoon buffeted the most vulnerable of Filipinos, 40% of whom live below the poverty line (i.e., $1.25 a day). Many of them fished for a living. Their livelihood compelled them to live dangerously close to the shoreline of western Pacific. The highest ground on which some of them found their perch was just one meter above sea level. When the storm swelled, with waves as high as six meters, its poor victims were defenseless. The crashing walls of water swept away all that they possessed. The cumulative losses in lives and livelihoods, homes and hearths, businesses and infrastructure have no parallel in recent Philippines history, just as Haiyan stands out in the annals of meteorology. Two years on, 13 million Filipinos, of whom 5 million are children, are still scarred by the destructive fury of Haiyan, while 600,000 remain homeless. The number of deaths from the superstorm surpassed 6,000.

The staggering scale of humanitarian crisis that followed Haiyan’s landfall was well beyond the capacity to respond of the under-resourced and overstretched Philippine government. Oxfam found it even overwhelming for the global humanitarian assistance system. The largest brunt of recovery efforts fell on the Philippines itself, which Haiyan had already bled of precious resources. Its economic losses alone were valued at a whopping $15 billion, which constitutes 5% of the Philippines’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of around $300 billion. In the face of a slow-down in global and regional economies, it will take the country many years of hard work before it recovers its bearing. As a nation of 7,100 islands, the Philippines sits on the front line of global climate change. This tragically means typhoon Haiyan is not the last of nature’s bites that Filipinos will have to endure. As climate change begins to impose dire costs, more such disasters loom ever larger on the horizon. The Philippines has already borne the brunt of worsening climate change in economic losses of $1.6 billion per year--from increasingly frequent and intense typhoons.

Yes, Typhoon Haiyan Was Caused by Climate Change (The Nation and Foreign Policy In Focus) Ground Zero of Climate Change

The Philippines is among the Asian and particularly insular nations that have become ground zero for climate change. Many coastal and island nations in Asia are already among its fellow sufferers. In the Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh has become the most exposed country to worsening climatic events. Year after year, as global temperatures continue to rise, it is battered by cyclones of ever-higher intensity and ever-greater frequency. Two Super-cyclones – Cyclone Sidr and Cyclone Aila -- respectively tore through the country in 2007 and 2009, just 18 months apart. Storms of this intensity, which historically have been spaced from 20 to 30 years, have become alarmingly frequent, upending the lives of millions of Bangladeshis. In a single event of extreme weather, hundreds, and sometimes thousands, lose their lives. Besides, economic and social dislocation visits millions, leaving them stranded for months, and even years, wiping out or impoverishing entire communities. If global mean warming exceeds 1.5 degrees Celsius, the largest chunk of coastal Bangladesh may begin to teem with “climate refugees.” According to the Bangladesh Center for Advanced Studies, more than 30 million Bangladeshis are set to lose everything in the next 30 to 50 years. By Bangladesh’s official reckoning, 20 million of its citizens may face climate migration over the next 40 years, for whom it proposes their “managed migration” to western countries. Rajendra Pachauri, Chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), lends his voice to Dacca’s call. He asks western governments to give the “managed migration” a serious consideration. Given mounting anti-immigrant sentiment across the globe, such calls are hardly a fantasy. Nevertheless such migration has already begun within the region. Two favorite destinations of climate refugees are India and Pakistan – in that order. Also included is Myanmar that received quite a number of Bangladeshi refugees, but is now pushing back into Bangladesh. Their exodus to these countries is fueling tensions, and even violent eruptions, especially in the Indian states of Assam and Myanmar, while the city of Karachi in Pakistan, which houses the largest number of Bangladeshis in the country brims with interethnic conflicts between Bangladeshi immigrants and the city’s major ethnic Urdu-speaking community, some of whose members assert to be called ‘Muhajirs’ (refugees) themselves, and embrace “Muhajir nationalism.”

Bangladesh’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Dipu Moni reckons that 1 degree Celsius increase in world temperatures will be enough to spell economic disaster for her country, as it will shave off 10% of its GDP in economic losses. Destruction from Super-cyclones such as Sidr, she reasons, takes 10 to 20 years to recover, and costs billions of dollars. There are projections that temperatures in South Asia could rise from two to five degree Celsius above preindustrial levels by the turn of the century. At 5 degrees Celsius, the temperature rise will be 250% higher than the expected global mean warming of 2 degrees Celsius. Rising temperatures are the motive force that powers tropical cyclones and superstorms of which Bangladesh has been the world’s worst victim. Future is thus fraught with predictable hazards for Bangladesh, whose vulnerability to deadliest storms is only to worsen in the years and decades to come. Of the world’s ten deadliest superstorms on record, six have visited upon Bangladesh: Bhola Cyclone, Hooghly River Cyclone, Backerganj Cyclone, Chittagong Cyclone and Cyclone 02B. Bhola Cyclone (1970) is believed to be the world’s deadliest to date with a death toll of more than half a million. If climate change continues to worsen, Bangladesh’s troubles will continue to multiply.

Even worse, the island nation of Maldives, which is barely 1.5 meters above sea level, will vanish from the face of the earth in the next 50 years, as the global average temperature continues to rise. A nation of 1,200 islands, 30 of its islands were swept away in the tsunami in 2004. Five years later, in 2009, Maldives’s President Mohamed Nasheed struck the world with a blunt call for ending fossil fuel consumption to save his country of 328,000 people: “If the world can’t save the Maldives today, it might be too late to save London, New York or Hong Kong tomorrow.” He pledged to make his nation carbon-neutral, running it on 100% renewable energy. Anticipating challenges that could forestall passage to a carbon-free Maldives, he reasoned: “Going green might cost a lot but refusing to act now will cost us the Earth.” He was deposed in a coup in 2012. He again lost a presidential bid in November 2013 as beneficiaries of the status quo managed to keep him out of power. Nobody knows “who” won the Maldives’s election, but everybody knows who lost it and why. President Nasheed nonetheless, retains his role as a climate crusader, whom many revere. The Hollywood Director Jon Shenk honored his work for climate justice in a memorable documentary, The Island President (cf. Murray’s review of “There Once Was an Island” in this issue).

In May 2008, Super-cyclone Nargis flatted part of Myanmar (Burma). The delta region of Irrawaddy was the prime site that absorbed the devastating blow of the deadly cyclone. The loss of human life ran into the tens of thousands although the correct number remains unknown to this day due to the ruling military government’s absolute control of information. The Guardian newspaper had put the number of dead in Cyclone Nargis at 140,000. According to the government’s own reckoning, 84, 500 were killed and 53,800 went missing in the country’s worst cyclone. It may be noted that in disaster after disaster, it has been confirmed that those who go missing remain unaccounted for and are seldom found alive. In parallel, the numbers of those affected by the destructive cyclone were in the millions. The United Nations estimated that the Cyclone had affected 2.4 million people across the country.

More importantly, the political economy of Myanmar further worsened the impact of the cyclone as the military junta in power put the entire country in lockdown, and refused to let in international relief agencies for fear of ‘spying.’ On the other hand, the Myanmar government, battered by decades of international sanctions and worldwide shunning, lacked resources of its own to undertake a massive relief operation. Cyclone Nargis thus revealed the soft belly of the government to the country’s suffering people. They challenged the government’s inability and incompetence to help its people in the most desperate hour of need. Rattled, the government rushed to strike a deal with its world’s most famous opposition leader, Nobel-laureate Aung San Su and her National Defense League (NDL). Three years later a quasi-civilian government took the reins of government. But the cyclone-fueled and monsoon-swelled disasters have since continued to strike. As recently as August 2015, all but one of the country’s 14 provinces were swept by flash floods from lashing monsoons, while rescuers struggled to reach disaster-stricken areas. At least 27 people were killed in these floods and more than 150,000 affected. More importantly, monsoon fury was not limited to Myanmar, but extended to the entire region from India, Nepal, and Pakistan to Vietnam.

Like the Maldives, Sri Lanka also is precariously perched in the heart of the Indian Ocean. Known for its stunning scenic beauty, this island nation has long been convulsed in a self-destructive war. It has just staunched its bleeding, but it still has a long way to go to bind up the deep wounds. At the same time, Sri Lanka has many bright spots. It leads south Asia in economic development (measured in per capita income), social progress (measured in adult literacy), gender equity, and climate-readiness. It is a Kerala -- the beauty spot of south Asian social democracy -- on the national scale. Yet climate-induced disruptions stare at it as the greatest threat to its survival over the next half century. “Its agriculture, fisheries, and tourism are particularly vulnerable to rising sea levels and weather-related disasters,” reports The Guardian.

Likewise, the coastal communities of India and Pakistan – in that order – run the same risk of being deluged as sea levels rise. In 2010, Pakistan experienced the worst flooding of its history in human dislocation, and economic losses. The flooding was described as a once-in-100-years event that forced 20 million of its residents from their homes, and cost the country $20 billion (one-tenth of Pakistan’s GDP of $200 billion in 2010) in economic losses. Pakistan pressed all of its military assets – army, navy and air force – into service to help ease the suffering of millions of Pakistanis living along the shoreline of the mighty Indus River. Yet help could reach only a fraction of 20 million displaced people, as one-fifth of the country (160,000 square kilometers) was under water. A year after, in 2011, Pakistan again witnessed monsoon-swollen flooding wreak havoc, dislodging another 6 million of its citizens. The floods have since been a regular occurrence that leaves the rural hinterland of the country, along the Indus shore, ravaged year after year. In 2015 the impact of floods was worsened by a heat wave that killed around 2,000 people in the mega city of Karachi. The floods and heat waves have been a regular feature of the Indian landscape as well. The floods in Uttarkhand and the state of Jammu and Kashmir were devastating, which dominated the news for days and weeks. The 2015 heat wave also added fuel to the fire, killing a number of people in urban areas.

Coastal India and Pakistan are especially vulnerable to superstorms. In 2014, both countries witnessed Super-cyclone Nilofar, which died down before it could reach its destructive worst. It brushed past India’s coastal state of Gujarat and the Pakistani province of Sindh. Both Gujarat and Sindh are coastal regions, which each host naval bases, naval installations and naval assets. By the time Nilofar bent around Karachi, the capital city of Sindh, it packed wind gusts of 250km (155 miles) an hour, a wind velocity that was common in all the deadly superstorms in the region, including the world’s most lethal cyclone of all time, the Bhola Cyclone, that flattened then East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). Un-evolved Superstorm Nilofar bore all the marks of Typhoon Haiyan that tore through the eastern and central Philippines a year earlier. The same year the disputed state of Jammu and Kashmir saw one of the severest floods that hit 1 million Kashmiris on both sides of the Line of Control in India and Pakistan, and left hundreds of residents dead. A year earlier, in 2013, the Indian state of Uttarkhand experienced one of the most devastating floods that killed 10,000 people. Early and severe monsoon rains breached a mountain glacier, sending ice, rock, mud and water down the mountain causing widespread death and destruction. Officials described the disaster as a ‘Himalayan tsunami.’

Climate Change stalks the African Continent

Fragility of the African continent is no less sobering. Drought, desertification, livestock fatalities, infectious diseases, food shortages and water scarcities already stalk the length and breadth of the region. Climate change is sharpening the lethality of these murderous challenges, and exacerbating the conditions of environmental decline in general. The giant nations of Africa, such as Congo, Libya, Nigeria, Somalia and Sudan, are already in the throes of ecological depletion. Their political conflicts are deeply anchored in their fragile ecologies. However, African sufferings may go unnoticed, as they are less likely to take the form of visually spectacular disasters on the scale of Hurricane Katrina, Superstorm Sandy or Typhoon Haiyan. Climate-induced disasters may yet trigger epidemics, large-scale human fatalities, or mass migration that would thrust the continent on to the world’s retina. It will likely occur because of sudden overheating of the continent. It must be remembered that Africa is already the warmest continent on the planet. Libya is the continent’s thermal powerhouse, whose citizens are known to have endured the world’s peak temperature. Just as a few degrees warmer water in the Atlantic or the Pacific can spell disasters, so can a few degrees warmer atmosphere. For all these reasons, Africa is as much in the eye of superstorms as are Asian nations. Africa stands threatened by the warming of the atmosphere that can set off a trajectory of destructive events. It is particularly fraught with climatic threats of epidemics, human fatalities, or mass migration, compounded by political conflicts that sear the entire continent.

The Science of Typhoons A section of meteorologists are still dismissive of causal links between climate change and the production of cyclones, typhoons, hurricanes or superstorms like Haiyan. Such dismissals, however, only feed into climate skepticism. The science of typhoons and climate change is quite clear. When the IPCC released its fifth assessment report on September 27, it confirmed warming of the atmosphere and overheating of the oceans -- the latter is responsible for the production of cyclones. When sea surface temperature hits 26 degrees Celsius, a cyclone is formed. When oceans are a few degrees warmer than normal, superstorms begin to brew. Superstorm Sandy burst out of the Atlantic coastal water that was about 3 degrees Celsius warmer than normal. Similarly, surface temperature of the western Pacific was 1 to 5 degrees Celsius warmer in 2013 than its average range in 1980-2000. Warmer oceans evaporate faster to power the storm, and warmer atmosphere holds more moisture to cause rainstorms.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) atmospheric scientist Kerry Emanuel, who also serves on the IPCC, sees clear connections between the warming of the oceans and the production of high velocity winds and storm surges as witnessed in Haiyan. He went so far as to suggest that developing nations such as the Philippines are suffering for the sins of developed countries that followed the path of carbon-heavy development. He stopped short of suggesting compensation for climate mitigation to developing nations.

Financing Climate Adaptation

But financing of climate adaptation has been an important part of climate change talks since the Copenhagen Conference in 2009. Haiyan’s landfall only added to the urgency of this need, which happened to time its landing with climate talks (COP 19) in Warsaw, Poland (November 11-22, 2013). These talks are held each year in the run up to crafting a binding climate treaty in 2015 to replace the Kyoto Protocol. One important outcome of the Copenhagen Conference was the financial commitments by developed nations to help less affluent nations in adapting to climate-induced disruptions. Initially, developed countries committed $30 billion for 2010-12, and pledged to increase this commitment to $100 billion a year by 2020. Oxfam, however, deflated such hopes in an analysis, which showed that developed nations had begun to wriggle out of even a modest commitment of $30 billion spread over multiple years. It further dampened any prospect for redeeming the grand pledge of $100 billion a year in climate finance by 2020.

Disaster Capitalism

These public commitments are likely to be relegated to transnational financial capital. Some saw the first sign of it in choosing Poland, notable for its pro-business, climate-skeptic, coal-fired development trajectory, as the site of climate talks. It is no wonder that, at the United Nations’ climate talks in Warsaw, discussions were focused on “mobilizing private finance such as loans and equity investments.” Private finance hotly pursues profits even in the midst of people’s sufferings. It is no coincidence that risk management companies that specialize in “catastrophe modeling” are proliferating. The chief research officer of one such company gloomily noted meager financial prospects in rebuilding the Philippines: “The economic activity of reconstruction itself is much lower [in the Philippines] than it would be in a rich country where everybody’s using insurance and claims assessors and getting quotes from builders. A lot of people [in the Philippines] will end up mending their own houses.” Naomi Klein famously described this profit-riven approach to human tragedies as “disaster capitalism.”

‘End this Madness’

The IPCC in its fifth assessment report (2008) concluded with 95% certainty that humans are at the root of climate change. This conclusion seems an official inauguration of Anthropocene, the age of human extravagance, in which humans have evolved or (more appropriately) devolved into a geological force on the scale of volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis to have altered the atmosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere. In the process, this hubris has hung a huge question mark over the very survival of the human race on this planet. Yet all humans are not equally destructive; nor are they equally vulnerable. Many, as in the Philippines, are victims of the actions of the few who are driving climate change and planning to profit from it at the same time. Among them, the fossil fuel industry and its beneficiaries, who are accumulating $1.9 trillion a year in subsidies, in addition to immense profits, sit atop. Climate change is the sin of their profiteering, for which the global poor are atoning with their lives. As the Philippine delegate to the United Nations’ climate talks in Warsaw tearfully pleaded, this madness must end. It doesn’t make sense to sacrifice the primary Earth economy for the illusory secondary human economy that is measured in the piles of worthless paper money built by “quantitative easing” (printing money).

Map of Asia-Pacific Region UK Trade & Investment Asia Task Force

Conclusion

The Asia-Pacific is the region most vulnerable to global climate change. It is the world’s most populous region with the highest population density, settled along the long coastlines of the Indian and the Pacific oceans. Its sub-regions have varying levels of vulnerabilities. South Asia, which is the world’s most populous sub-region with 1.7 billion people, houses half of the world’s poor, and is home to 17 of the world’s 20 most polluted cities. All this readily translates into human disaster and economic destruction if meteorological events become uncontrollable with supercyclones and superstorms such as Typhoon Haiyan or disastrous floods that have been stalking the region since 2008. The African Indian Ocean also is lethal for Africa’s coastal nations, such as Somalia and Ethiopia, which are vulnerable to calamitous monsoons rising from the Indian Ocean, creating unbearable human and economic costs in droughts and deluges.

Coastal and Island nations in the Asia-Pacific, such as Bangladesh, Maldives, Philippines and Sri Lanka, have contributed the least to global climate change, but will suffer the most from climate breakdown. Climate justice demands that nations that contributed the most to global climate change make comparable contributions to the United Nations Green Climate Fund to reverse the tide of climatic and meteorological disasters that have grown to become a permanent feature of the planet. Ironically, the Green Climate Fund is one of the main obstacles to reincarnating and strengthening the Kyoto Protocol in Paris by the end of this year. If the Paris summit on climate change ends without a meaningful climate pact to replace the Kyoto Protocol, human suffering will continue to grow. It however bears reminding that human misery does not stay in one place; it reappears in the unlikeliest of places. It is therefore imperative that the world invests in climate mitigation and climate adaptation to reduce the human and economic cost of climate change.

Note: This is a revised, expanded and updated version of an article published earlier in the Asia-Pacific Journal.

Tarique Niazi, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Environmental Sociology at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Recommended citation: Tarique Niazi, "Ground Zero of Climate Change: Coastal and Island Nations of the Asia-Pacific", The Asia-Pacific Journal, Vol. 13, Issue 48, No. 2, December 14, 2015.

Related Articles:

-Tarique Niazi, “The Asia-Pacific in the Eye of Superstorms”

-Edward B. Barbier, Overcoming Environmental Degradation and Wealth Inequality in the Asia-Pacific Region”

-Andrew DeWit, "Hiroshima's Disaster, Climate Crisis, and the Future of the Resilient City"

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Offline agelbert

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Re: The Oceans are Coming? BFD, I got other Worries.
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2015, 04:08:04 PM »
This is only the beginning. I KNOW that sea level is NOT going to rise gradually, as too many wish to believe, regardless of the fact it has risen gradually for the last century.

Within a decade you will see a jump during a three to four month period, probably between June and September (coinciding with a GIANT chunk of Greenland ice sliding into the ocean), of two or three FEET. That will be great fun for every port in the whole fucking world.

When that happens, I will be here to remind all the FOOLS who claimed it was, impossible, ridiculous, ignorant, unscientific, unproven, unlikely, silly, dumbass (and so on).

Have a nice day. 
 
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Re: The Oceans are Coming? BFD, I got other Worries.
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2015, 04:56:28 PM »
This is only the beginning. I KNOW that sea level is NOT going to rise gradually, as too many wish to believe, regardless of the fact it has risen gradually for the last century.

Within a decade you will see a jump during a three to four month period, probably between June and September (coinciding with a GIANT chunk of Greenland ice sliding into the ocean), of two or three FEET. That will be great fun for every port in the whole fucking world.

A good time to move to higher altitude locations!

RE
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Offline agelbert

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Re: The Oceans are Coming? BFD, I got other Worries.
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2015, 10:45:54 PM »
This is only the beginning. I KNOW that sea level is NOT going to rise gradually, as too many wish to believe, regardless of the fact it has risen gradually for the last century.

Within a decade you will see a jump during a three to four month period, probably between June and September (coinciding with a GIANT chunk of Greenland ice sliding into the ocean), of two or three FEET. That will be great fun for every port in the whole fucking world.

A good time to move to higher altitude locations!

RE

Agreed.  :emthup:
Leges         Sine    Moribus      Vanae   
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if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

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Seas are rising at fastest rate in 28 centuries
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2016, 02:10:06 AM »
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/local-news/20160222-seas-are-rising-at-fastest-rate-in-28-centuries.ece

Seas are rising at fastest rate in 28 centuries


2015 File Photo/The Associated Press
Tidal floods are occurring more frequently in places like Charleston, S.C., killing lawns and trees, polluting supplies of fresh water and blocking streets.

FROM WIRE REPORTS
Published: 22 February 2016 11:07 PM
Updated: 22 February 2016 11:14 PM

The oceans are rising faster than at any other point in the last 28 centuries, and human emissions of greenhouse gases are primarily responsible, scientists reported Monday.

They said the flooding that is starting to make life miserable in many coastal towns — such as Miami Beach, Fla., Norfolk, Va., and Charleston, S.C. — was largely a consequence of those emissions, and that it is likely to grow worse in coming years.

The scientists confirmed previous estimates, but with a larger data set, that if global emissions continue at a high rate over the next few decades, the ocean could rise as much as 4 feet by 2100, as ocean water expands and the great ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica begin to collapse.

Experts say the situation will grow far worse in the 22nd century and beyond, probably requiring the abandonment of many of the world’s coastal cities.

“I think we can definitely be confident that sea-level rise is going to continue to accelerate if there’s further warming, which inevitably there will be,” said Stefan Rahmstorf, a professor of ocean physics at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany and co-author of a paper released Monday by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Ice simply melts faster when the temperatures get higher,” Rahmstorf said. “That’s just basic physics.”

In a report issued at the same time as the scientific paper, a climate research and communications organization in Princeton, N.J., Climate Central, used the new findings to calculate that roughly three-quarters of the tidal floods now occurring in towns along the American East Coast would not be happening in the absence of sea-level rise caused by human emissions.

The lead author of that report, Benjamin Strauss, said the same was likely to be true on a global scale, in any coastal community that has seen an increase of saltwater flooding in recent decades.

Local factors do come into play, though: Communities on land that is sinking, as in the Chesapeake Bay region, are being hit especially hard by the rising sea level.

Tidal floods are occurring more frequently and are becoming a strain in many towns by killing lawns and trees, polluting supplies of fresh water, blocking streets in the middle of sunny afternoons and sometimes stranding entire island communities for hours by covering the roads to the mainland.

“I think we need a new way to think about most coastal flooding,” Strauss said. “It’s not the tide. It’s not the wind. It’s us. That’s true for most of the coastal floods we now experience.”

The new research was led by Robert Kopp, an earth scientist at Rutgers University who has won respect from his colleagues by bringing elaborate statistical techniques to bear on longstanding problems, such as understanding the history of global sea level.
Larger data set

Scientists knew that the sea level rose drastically at the end of the last ice age, by almost 400 feet, causing shorelines to retreat by up to 100 miles in places. They also knew that the sea level had basically stabilized, like the rest of the climate, over the last several thousand years, the period when human civilization arose and spread across the earth.

There were small variations of climate and sea level over that period, and several recent papers have tried to clarify these. The new paper confirms a central finding of the earlier research, that the sharp increase of sea level in the 20th century was unprecedented over thousands of years, but does so with a larger data set that may add to the confidence scientists place in the results.

The paper confirms that the ocean is exquisitely sensitive to small variations in the earth’s temperature — a portentous finding, given that human emissions are inducing a large temperature rise.

The researchers found that when the average global temperature fell by a third of a degree Fahrenheit in the Middle Ages, for instance, ice started to build up on land, and the volume of ocean water contracted, causing the average surface of the ocean to fall about 3 inches over 400 years. When the climate warmed slightly, that trend reversed.

“Physics tells us that sea-level change and temperature change should go hand in hand,” Kopp said. “This new geological record confirms it.”
Paris agreement

In the 19th century, as the Industrial Revolution took hold, the oceans began to rise, and have gone up by about 8 inches since 1880. That may sound small, but the increase has caused extensive erosion worldwide, and governments are spending billions of dollars to try to shore up beaches and other coastal defenses.

Largely because of human emissions, global temperatures have jumped about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit since the 19th century. Land ice has started to melt all over the planet, and seawater is expanding as it absorbs heat. The seas are rising at what appears to be an accelerating pace, lately reaching a rate of about a foot per century.

One of the authors of the new paper, Rahmstorf, had previously published estimates suggesting the seas could rise as much as 5 or 6 feet by 2100. But with the improved calculations from the new paper, his latest upper estimate is 3 to 4 feet.

That means Rahmstorf’s estimate is now more consistent with calculations issued in 2013 by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a U.N. body that periodically reviews and summarizes climate research. The panel found that continued high emissions might produce a sea rise of 1.7 to 3.2 feet over the 21st century.

Rahmstorf said, however, that the rise would eventually exceed 3 feet — the only question is how long it will take.

The recent climate agreement negotiated in Paris, if acted upon, will bring emissions down enough to slow the rate of sea-level rise in coming centuries, but scientists say the deal was not remotely ambitious enough to forestall a significant melting of the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets.

Justin Gillis,

The New York Times
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Offline azozeo

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Re: Seas are rising at fastest rate in 28 centuries
« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2016, 08:58:45 AM »
http://www.dallasnews.com/news/local-news/20160222-seas-are-rising-at-fastest-rate-in-28-centuries.ece

Seas are rising at fastest rate in 28 centuries


2015 File Photo/The Associated Press
Tidal floods are occurring more frequently in places like Charleston, S.C., killing lawns and trees, polluting supplies of fresh water and blocking streets.

FROM WIRE REPORTS
Published: 22 February 2016 11:07 PM
Updated: 22 February 2016 11:14 PM

The oceans are rising faster than at any other point in the last 28 centuries, and human emissions of greenhouse gases are primarily responsible, scientists reported Monday.

They said the flooding that is starting to make life miserable in many coastal towns — such as Miami Beach, Fla., Norfolk, Va., and Charleston, S.C. — was largely a consequence of those emissions, and that it is likely to grow worse in coming years.

The scientists confirmed previous estimates, but with a larger data set, that if global emissions continue at a high rate over the next few decades, the ocean could rise as much as 4 feet by 2100, as ocean water expands and the great ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica begin to collapse.

Experts say the situation will grow far worse in the 22nd century and beyond, probably requiring the abandonment of many of the world’s coastal cities.

“I think we can definitely be confident that sea-level rise is going to continue to accelerate if there’s further warming, which inevitably there will be,” said Stefan Rahmstorf, a professor of ocean physics at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany and co-author of a paper released Monday by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Ice simply melts faster when the temperatures get higher,” Rahmstorf said. “That’s just basic physics.”

In a report issued at the same time as the scientific paper, a climate research and communications organization in Princeton, N.J., Climate Central, used the new findings to calculate that roughly three-quarters of the tidal floods now occurring in towns along the American East Coast would not be happening in the absence of sea-level rise caused by human emissions.

The lead author of that report, Benjamin Strauss, said the same was likely to be true on a global scale, in any coastal community that has seen an increase of saltwater flooding in recent decades.

Local factors do come into play, though: Communities on land that is sinking, as in the Chesapeake Bay region, are being hit especially hard by the rising sea level.

Tidal floods are occurring more frequently and are becoming a strain in many towns by killing lawns and trees, polluting supplies of fresh water, blocking streets in the middle of sunny afternoons and sometimes stranding entire island communities for hours by covering the roads to the mainland.

“I think we need a new way to think about most coastal flooding,” Strauss said. “It’s not the tide. It’s not the wind. It’s us. That’s true for most of the coastal floods we now experience.”

The new research was led by Robert Kopp, an earth scientist at Rutgers University who has won respect from his colleagues by bringing elaborate statistical techniques to bear on longstanding problems, such as understanding the history of global sea level.
Larger data set

Scientists knew that the sea level rose drastically at the end of the last ice age, by almost 400 feet, causing shorelines to retreat by up to 100 miles in places. They also knew that the sea level had basically stabilized, like the rest of the climate, over the last several thousand years, the period when human civilization arose and spread across the earth.

There were small variations of climate and sea level over that period, and several recent papers have tried to clarify these. The new paper confirms a central finding of the earlier research, that the sharp increase of sea level in the 20th century was unprecedented over thousands of years, but does so with a larger data set that may add to the confidence scientists place in the results.

The paper confirms that the ocean is exquisitely sensitive to small variations in the earth’s temperature — a portentous finding, given that human emissions are inducing a large temperature rise.

The researchers found that when the average global temperature fell by a third of a degree Fahrenheit in the Middle Ages, for instance, ice started to build up on land, and the volume of ocean water contracted, causing the average surface of the ocean to fall about 3 inches over 400 years. When the climate warmed slightly, that trend reversed.

“Physics tells us that sea-level change and temperature change should go hand in hand,” Kopp said. “This new geological record confirms it.”
Paris agreement

In the 19th century, as the Industrial Revolution took hold, the oceans began to rise, and have gone up by about 8 inches since 1880. That may sound small, but the increase has caused extensive erosion worldwide, and governments are spending billions of dollars to try to shore up beaches and other coastal defenses.

Largely because of human emissions, global temperatures have jumped about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit since the 19th century. Land ice has started to melt all over the planet, and seawater is expanding as it absorbs heat. The seas are rising at what appears to be an accelerating pace, lately reaching a rate of about a foot per century.

One of the authors of the new paper, Rahmstorf, had previously published estimates suggesting the seas could rise as much as 5 or 6 feet by 2100. But with the improved calculations from the new paper, his latest upper estimate is 3 to 4 feet.

That means Rahmstorf’s estimate is now more consistent with calculations issued in 2013 by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a U.N. body that periodically reviews and summarizes climate research. The panel found that continued high emissions might produce a sea rise of 1.7 to 3.2 feet over the 21st century.

Rahmstorf said, however, that the rise would eventually exceed 3 feet — the only question is how long it will take.

The recent climate agreement negotiated in Paris, if acted upon, will bring emissions down enough to slow the rate of sea-level rise in coming centuries, but scientists say the deal was not remotely ambitious enough to forestall a significant melting of the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets.

Justin Gillis,

The New York Times


Gee,
I guess we better impose a carbon tax on the homo saps immediately.
That'll fix that ocean problem .....
Oh, let the sun beat down upon my face
And stars fill my dream
I’m a traveler of both time and space
To be where I have been
To sit with elders of the gentle race
This world has seldom seen
They talk of days for which they sit and wait
All will be revealed

Offline MKing

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Re: Seas are rising at fastest rate in 28 centuries
« Reply #12 on: February 23, 2016, 10:41:52 AM »
Gee,
I guess we better impose a carbon tax on the homo saps immediately.
That'll fix that ocean problem .....

The ocean isn't a problem, it is just the ocean. Maybe Niruboo is doing it! Or the gaseous part of the galactic cluster we are in right now, or approaching, or just went through!

Quick! Someone get me a cock-a-mammy you tube video starring the astrological equivalent of Harold Camping to tell us we are all gonna die!

Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.
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Offline RE

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Surging Seas Risk Zone Interactive Map
« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2016, 08:41:18 PM »
You can enter your own location to see where you stand.  You can look at both flood potential and sea level rise.

The estimates seem to me to be pretty conservative overall.

From the http://sealevel.climatecentral.org/ website.

RE

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Offline RE

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Record-breaking wave thunders through North Atlantic
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2016, 01:34:37 AM »
SURF'S UP!

RE

http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/13/europe/record-wave-north-atlantic/index.html

Record-breaking wave thunders through North Atlantic


By Juliet Perry

Updated 3:58 AM ET, Wed December 14, 2016
Story highlights

    Wave is highest ever recorded by a buoy
    The enormous swell measured higher than a six-story building

(CNN)A colossal wave recorded in the North Atlantic has smashed previous records for size.
The 62 foot (19 meter) wave -- captured between Iceland and the UK on February 4 2013 -- has set a new world record for the biggest wave ever recorded by a buoy, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

The previous record of 60 feet (18 meters) was also measured in the North Atlantic in December 2007.
Four times the size of a double-decker bus, the WMO said the huge swell followed the passage of a "very strong cold front" which produced powerful winds of up to 50 mph (80 kph).
The organization said the delay in confirming the new record was due to the time it took to analyze, cross-check and verify the data.
"This is the first time we have ever measured a wave of 19 meters. It is a remarkable record," said Wenjian Zhang, WMO Assistant Secretary-General, in a statement.
Wave height is defined as the distance from the crest of one wave to the trough of the next.
The buoy that recorded the wave is part of an extensive network of both moored and drifting buoys that -- along with ships and satellites -- monitor the oceans and forecast "meteorological hazards."
Zhang said capturing a wave of this size highlights how important these observations are in protecting the lives of crew and passengers on busy shipping lanes.
"We need high quality and extensive ocean records to help in our understanding of weather/ocean interactions," he said.
He added that despite huge leaps in satellite technology, moored and drifting buoys still play a major role in collecting data from those hard to reach places.
A surfer rides a wave off Praia do Norte near Nazare, central Portugal, on October 24, 2016.
A surfer rides a wave off Praia do Norte near Nazare, central Portugal, on October 24, 2016.
While the gigantic swell has confirmed its place in the record books, it falls short of the biggest wave ever surfed.
A mammoth 78 foot (23 meter) wave was surfed by Hawaiian, Garret McNamara, in November 2011 at Nazare, in Portugal.
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