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Thread: Sea level Rise

  1. #1 Sea level Rise 
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    Back in January Boston's Mayor Marty Walsh referred to man-made sea level rise as one of Boston's greatest threats. In the past century sea level as rising about a foot with up to another 2 feet by mid-century. This past week Boston received record sea flooding. Currently, there are roughly 60,000 homes within 3' of sea level. This is all too typical of the growing threat. Galveston sea level has risen by 28" over the past century and even conservative politicians are starting to express concern about whether Houston will need to move in the future. Millions of Americans are likely to be displaced in the next few decades. A recent Pentagon study estimated that more than half of US bases are vulnerable to climate change is driven climate change--they are planning regardless of the politicals of denial.


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    Well, I live in the Netherlands. The whole country is build with an increasing sea level in mind. Dykes are plentiful, predetermined floodplains, river "uiterwaarden". This last thing is a dutch word, and there is no translation in english i know of. It means an area within a river area that is designed to flood to give a river more room when necessary.

    This combined with sluices and "gemalen" which is another dutch word with no translation into english. It is a threaded pumping system designed to keep water out of a lower based area.

    I don't like feet, inches and such. It makes me think how much 60.000 american homes are in non american homes units. .

    But, these terms are a necessity to keep your "2 feet" from getting wet.

    We sacrifice some area's to the flood, to keep high populated area's dry. We pay a certain tax, "waterschapsbelasting" to pay for dykes and other water works. And everyone pays an overal portion, so the area's above the sealevel don't pay less than those below. I think every family or house pays a particular amount, based on the surface area of the city they live in, and the amount of people living in the city. I believe i pay about 200€ a year or so.

    I hope this gives you some ideas of what there is to do.


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    Several visits there when I lived in Europe. Quite impressive engineering combined with beautiful landscape and equally nice people. That being said such projects are monumentally expensive, do massive ecological damage and won't work due to geology in most places.

    (I find standard units much easier to work with though as a scientist I'm proficient with metric--natural units are far more practical for everyday understanding and estimation)
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    Some areas of the globe have too much water whilst other areas have none.
    Surely science has figured out a resolve by now?
    We have technology to convert seawater into oxygen for submarines.
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  6. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aeronaut View Post
    Some areas of the globe have too much water whilst other areas have none.
    Surely science has figured out a resolve by now?
    We have technology to convert seawater into oxygen for submarines.
    Yes we have these long tubular thingies called "pipes".
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quite impressive engineering combined with beautiful landscape and equally nice people. That being said such projects are monumentally expensive, do massive ecological damage and won't work due to geology in most places.
    The Netherlands is a special case, almost a thousand square miles of land reclaimed from the sea and a major effort in the Delta Works to keep the sea at bay (so to speak).

    Global warming is already well underway. I read yesterday that if we had changed our energy profile 30 years ago we'd still be having the climate instability we see today. This thing is much bigger than a few coal plants or your neighbor's Hummer. It's something our children, grand-children and great-grand-children will have to deal with.

    Some arctic areas will become temperate (especially if Antarctica keeps calving and Greenland loses its ice sheet). Earth's albedo will change, the oxygen level in the atmosphere will change, some areas will flood, some deserts will become arable. Hopefully it'll happen slow enough that people will be able to adjust. We have in the past.

    Bear in mind, we're just coming out of the Quaternary Ice Age with periodic ups and downs since then (see Little Ice Age). Earth's temperature has always varied -- just not this fast before.
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