A new report by Nature Communications has found that sea levels are rising much faster than previous reports have claimed. By the end of the 21st century, over 300 million people will be displaced from their homes.
Since the future is not set in stone, the report gave multiple estimates on how much sea levels would rise. In almost every case, the findings in this report were much worse than previous estimations.
The lowest claims a rise of two feet, while the highest is a whopping seven-foot increase. An increase as large as seven feet would submerge entire cities and cause large parts of the current coastline to become uninhabitable for humans.
However, it is important to remember, nothing is set in stone.
Why Is It Uncertain?
The fight against climate change may not be going great, but it is having an impact. The world still has time to lower greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the impact of rising temperatures.
How much those temperatures rise will decide how much the sea levels will increase. For example, take a look at the current state of Antarctica. It is warming faster than anywhere else in the world.
This is causing the ice sheets to melt faster than expected and will directly cause the sea level to rise. But this isn’t exclusive to Antarctica. Greenland is another great example of rapid ice melting.
However, one thing is certain, the sea levels will rise and even stopping all greenhouse gas emissions overnight will not prevent that.
What Can Be Done?
Unfortunately, not much can be done to fight a rising ocean. This will not only make certain areas unlivable, but it will increase the chance for floods in areas that have never experienced them. This, by itself, will cost billions of dollars to prepare.
The only thing we can do is get our greenhouse gas emissions under control. This will reduce how much the sea levels rise.