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Global Sea Level Rise Accelerated to 4.6 mm Per Year After 2010

Human forced climate change through fossil fuel burning now presents a serious threat to the world’s coastal cities and island nations. Diverse regions of the world are now facing increased inundation at times of high tide and during storms. Unfortunately, this trend is only worsening. And depending on how much additional fossil fuel is burned, we could see between 2 to 10 feet or more of sea level rise this Century.

(Sea level rise analysis and update based on information provided by AVISO, Climate Reanalyzer, and the work of Dr. James Hansen.)

As the Earth has steadily warmed to 1.1 C above 1880s averages, the oceans of our world have risen. At first, the rate of rise was very mild — a mere 0.6 mm per year during the early 20th Century. However, as the rate of global warming increased and the oceans took in more heat, the middle 20th Century saw sea level rise increase to 1.4 mm per year. By the end of the 20th Century, the polar glaciers had begun to melt in earnest. And from 1990 to the present day, the rate of sea level rise has accelerated to 3.3 mm per year.

Due to more warm water invading the basal regions of glaciers and more ice bergs calving into the world ocean, the annual rate at which ocean levels increase continues to jump higher. And during recent years — from 2010 to 2018 — the world ocean has risen by nearly half a centimeter each year (4.6 mm).

Global Sea Level Rise 4.6 mm Per year

(Since 2010, the rate of sea level rise has again accelerated. And it appears that El Nino years have recently tended to produce strong upward swings in the annual rate of increase. This may be due to El Nino’s tendency to set up stronger cycles of energy transfer to the poles. NOAA presently indicates a 50 percent chance that a mild to moderate El Nino will emerge during the winter of 2018-2019. Will we see another sea level spike at that time should El Nino emerge? Image source: AVISO.)

Now both island nationals and coastal cities face the increasing danger of rising tides, of inundation, and of loss of lands and infrastructure. A rapid switch to renewable energy and away from fossil fuel burning is needed to save many regions. However, due to presently high greenhouse gas accumulation, it is likely that some zones will be lost over the coming decades.

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15 Comments

  1. This is the kind of post I hate to like… but thanks for keeping us informed!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply
    • I’d honestly prefer not to write these kinds of things. Unfortunately it looks like we’re going to be dealing with this problem for decades to come. Worse the more fossil fuels we burn. Better the less, but still a serious problem.

      Liked by 3 people

      Reply
      • You’re not wrong there. Sadly all too many people are still convinced we don’t have a problem… or refuse to accept it because of a fear of change.

        Liked by 1 person

        Reply
  2. Here in Canada we have Alberta, an inland province, wanting to increase the export of tar sands bitumen to Asia through BC ports, where sea level rise is of great concern. The federal government is pushing more pipelines as well, claiming they are in the “national interest” and are key to meeting Canada’s climate commitments. Orwell would get a big laugh out of that.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    • Orwell would definitely get a big laugh out of the present state of communications surrounding the issue of reducing fossil fuel use, the need for increased renewable energy access, and climate change.

      Like

      Reply
  3. I wonder which “western democratic” government will be the first to establish a Ministry of Truth ?

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    • The fossil fuel industry is already engaged in Orwellian misinformation activities and has been for some time. Presently, the false related attacks on electrical vehicles have hit a very high gear.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
      • Vic

         /  May 16, 2018

        Starting to see pushback now against the new lab cultured meat products that promise to slash CO2 & CH4 emissions from the cattle industry. While the newcomers would like to label their products as “clean meat”, cattle industry lobbyists are pushing to outlaw the term, preferring instead the more unsavoury label of “lab grown protein”.

        France has led the charge where just last month they banned the use of meat and dairy-related words from vegan and vegetarian food labels such as “vegetarian sausage”, “vegan bacon”, and even “almond milk”. The United States Cattlemen’s Association is hot on their heels and the Cattle Council of Australia look set to follow suit.

        http://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2018-05-07/australian-cattle-lobby-group-considers-calling-for-meat-change/9728928

        Liked by 1 person

        Reply
  4. John S

     /  May 16, 2018

    Safe and reponsible… did someone say cigarette?

    On Tuesday the [Australian] government released 21 new acreages that petroleum companies will be able to bid for across six basins off Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria and the Ashmore and Cartier Islands.

    The federal resources minister, Matt Canavan, said the acreage release was part of the government’s commitment to meeting Australia’s future energy needs.

    “The Australian government is committed to the safe and responsible development of oil and gas resources,” he said. “Offshore oil and gas exploration is vital to meeting Australia’s future energy needs.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/may/15/more-of-the-great-australian-bight-opened-to-oil-and-gas

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    Reply
    • John S

       /  May 16, 2018

      …safe cigarette

      Like

      Reply
    • redskylite

       /  May 16, 2018

      Talking of cigarettes, that old scoundrel Fred Singer has a piece published in the WSJ today, admitting that the sea level is rising (hard to deny with empirical evidence abounding), but blaming on some other phenomena than climate change, Fortunately his obfuscation lies behind a paywall.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
  5. miles h

     /  May 16, 2018

    “Worst-case climate change scenario could be more extreme than thought, scientists warn”

    The standard worst case scenario, RCP 8.5, assumes rapid and unrestricted economic growth which will see rampant burning of fossil fuels. In addition, it also assumes no further action will be taken to limit warming than the policies countries are already pursuing.
    However, scientists at the University of Illinois say there is a one-in-three chance that by the end of the century emissions will have exceeded those estimated in the RCP 8.5 scenario.
    “Our estimates indicate that, due to higher than assumed economic growth rates, there is a greater than 35 per cent probability that year 2100 emissions concentrations will exceed those given by RCP8.5,” Peter Christensen told the New Scientist. https://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change-model-scenario-rcp85-global-warming-illinios-study-a8353346.html

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  1. Global Sea Level Rise Accelerated to 4.6 mm Per Year After 2010 — robertscribbler « Antinuclear

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