Global sea levels could rise far more than predicted

24 Mai, 2019, 03:38 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • UN Secretary General António Guterres and Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama at a traditional welcome ceremony on Wednesday

This would be in a world that had warmed by around 5C - one of the worst case scenarios for global warming.

Experts on climate change have made a new forecast, as average sea level will change in the coming decades.

It builds a rational - rather than political - consensus by accounting for both uncertainties and diversity of opinions or perspectives.

The study authors also said a lot of the lost land would be in "critical regions of food production" - places like the Nile River delta in Africa, according to the BBC.

It's no secret that the ice on Earth's poles is melting and that it's causing global sea levels to rise.

If sea levels did really rise by 6.5 feet, that could result in a loss of 691,120 square miles (1.8 million square kilometers) of land, the authors of the new report said.

It provides the most accurate understanding to date of their effect - with SLR posing a threat to coastal communities and ecosystems, said the researchers.

Strategies and measures to mitigate and plan for the potential impacts are reliant on scientific projections of future SLR - conventionally provided using numerical modelling.

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"In parts of Antarctica, the ice sheet has thinned by extraordinary amounts, and so we set out to show how much was due to changes in climate and how much was due to weather", stated Andy Shepherd, a polar scientist at the University of Leeds and the lead author of the study.

There are two main policy responses to climate change - mitigation and adaptation.

This was under both low and high global temperature rise scenarios.

Lead author professor Jonathan Bamber, from the University of Bristol, said: "Structured expert judgment provides a formal approach for estimating uncertain quantities based on current scientific understanding, and can be useful for estimating quantities that are hard to model".

A new assessment found runaway carbon emissions and melting ice sheets could result in such a worst case scenario, potentially double the upper limit outlined by the United Nations climate science panel's last major report.

The long-held view has been that the world's seas would rise by a maximum of just under a metre by 2100.

The upper limit for sea level rise by 2100 has previously been estimated between 1.7 and 3.2ft. - the range given in the fifth assessment report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the leading global body for the assessment of climate change, in 2013. The rate of glacier melt in Greenland and Antartica is accelerating, and the authors of the report say current prediction models don't account for significant uncertainties in how melting ice sheets could affect sea level rise.

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