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Earth Stats Science

Seas Rising Faster Than Projected 605

New submitter zenyu writes "IPCC's 2mm per year estimate for sea level rise at current CO2 levels has proven too optimistic. Sea levels have been rising 3.2mm per year in the last two decades. The IPCC's 50 cm — 100 cm projection for the next century may prove equally optimistic."
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Seas Rising Faster Than Projected

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  • Republicans (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @04:51AM (#42114683)

    Just vote out the damn Republicans and their big-oil anti-science agenda and focus on energy efficiency.

  • It's ok. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @04:53AM (#42114695)

    Just tell those seas you don't believe in global we fucked up the climate change.

    That's the cheap choice. And it's all we're gonna do.

  • by mozumder ( 178398 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @04:55AM (#42114705)

    This is their entire purpose in life - to force you to pay to do anything by using their energy resources. And, they're going to do everything they can to make sure any bad news about energy consumption goes away.

    Remember kids, this is why you fight the energy companies. Do everything you can to fight them back!

  • I doubt it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by OrangeTide ( 124937 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:00AM (#42114733) Homepage Journal

    Bad news about energy is good news for energy companies, that means they can have a new excuse to charge more for energy.

  • I've given up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ndogg ( 158021 ) <the DOT rhorn AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:01AM (#42114735) Homepage Journal

    I've grown extraordinarily pessimistic that anything can or will be done about climate change at this point, and my only thought at this point is that we just need to enjoy what we can until the inevitable self-inflicted pain and suffering we will endure from its affects.

    So let's all party for tomorrow we may die.

  • None at all. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by robbak ( 775424 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:23AM (#42114815) Homepage

    All we are going to do about it is shoot the climate scientists for not doing enough to warn us.

  • Re:I've given up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gox ( 1595435 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:26AM (#42114821)

    I've grown extraordinarily pessimistic that anything can or will be done about climate change at this point, and my only thought at this point is that we just need to enjoy what we can until the inevitable self-inflicted pain and suffering we will endure from its affects.

    We don't know how to solve such problems. The extent we can do with our current political technology is to become increasingly centralized to implement and enforce consistent policies. Which is a much bigger nightmare than global warming and would cause more suffering in the long run. Of course we won't call it suffering then, since we will be educated to know better.

    I'm pessimistic about our ability to solve this problem, but I'm mildly optimistic about the coping part. We can easily adapt. New technologies will deal with the problems we're likely to face. The worst part would still be the politics of it. There is too much friction in resource allocation, which will make it very hard to help threatened populations. There is even more political friction if you want to relocate them.

    Would these issues result in the same kind of centralization? If so, then moving in that direction now would be the lesser evil. It's very hard to reason about.

  • by kyrsjo ( 2420192 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:33AM (#42114851)

    "The rich" might loose their valuable beachfront property, but many poor in Bangladesh and other places will drown.

    A small sadistic part of me is looking forward to see what our right-wing politicians who argue that (a) climate change is a conspiracy and (b) immigrants are evil once the people-flood sets in - hundreds of millions of people are not going to sit quietly on their hands and drown, no matter how much right-wing western politicians wish that is true... Lets just hope there are no mayor shortages before the worlds food production can adjust - but on the other hand, "someone else" will probably get the pointy end of that problem, too...

  • Regret (Score:5, Insightful)

    by allcoolnameswheretak ( 1102727 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:51AM (#42114911)

    One of the most regretful moments of my life was when a few people from an organization I don't remember were visiting my school, claiming that rising sea levels are nothing more than myths and scare stories. I clearly remember the guy in front of the class being all smug, saying "I'm sure you've all seen the movie Water World. Well, that's just Hollywood because the sea is never going to rise. Ice floats on water and has actually a lower density than water, therefore, if it melts, the sea level is going to stay the same or actually -lower-....".

    I was in agony, on the one hand I wanted to shove Antarctica, an entire continent packed with ice, full in his face, but my shyness, fear of being at the center of attention and making a scene by completely discrediting these highborn scientific authorities that had come to talk to us, made me stay quiet.

    Man, how much I regret having stayed quiet.

  • Re:Denier (Score:5, Insightful)

    by allcoolnameswheretak ( 1102727 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:59AM (#42114957)

    Well, we didn't follow you into the collective clusterfuck that was Iraq... and we've been enjoying universal health care and other communist evils for some time now, so would you like to elaborate how exactly we are doing the US's bidding?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:13AM (#42115021)

    Yes unfortunately this is being treated as a scientific observation where caution means not making the most extreme claims. It should be treated like an engineering problem where caution means assuming the most extreme claims might be true (and build in a factor of 2 safety).

  • by rrohbeck ( 944847 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:22AM (#42115067)

    The IPCC always said that various positive feedbacks were not included because the science wasn't clear enough. That always implied that the AR projections were the best possible case, and don't forget that those were the consensus opinion - meaning that if the Saudi delegates didn't agree it wouldn't go in the AR.

    I just hope the AR5 will be a little more realistic and a wake-up call.

  • Re:Denier (Score:4, Insightful)

    by somersault ( 912633 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:29AM (#42115085) Homepage Journal

    The only thing universal healthcare brought you was waiting lines and mediocre care if you're in any country but norway/sweden/denmark and maybe the UK

    Mediocre care is better than no care.

    Plus people can still go private if they choose.

  • Re:Denier (Score:5, Insightful)

    by k2r ( 255754 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @06:51AM (#42115179)

    > The only thing universal healthcare brought you was waiting lines and mediocre care

    Average life expectancy:
    USA: 78.1 years
    UK: 79 years
    Germany: 79.3 years
    France: 81 years

    I think I'll keep my German mediocre universal healthcare.

    (Source: [] )

  • Re:Denier (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SilenceBE ( 1439827 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @07:32AM (#42115353)
    The only thing universal healthcare brought you was waiting lines and mediocre care if you're in any country but norway/sweden/denmark and maybe the UK

    The typical ignorant American answer of really not knowing anything about the world outside. In this European country (Belgium) we don't have long waiting lines or mediocre care. That is not based on some flag waving argument but multiple studies that come out every year. This is the case for most European countries BTW.

    It is funny as Americans tend always to point as greece as THE example of the "socialist" plan going bad. The situation in Greece has nothing to do with healthcare or socialism but with clientelism, fraud, tax evasion (which for American companies is a sport), etc.
  • Re:Denier (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @07:52AM (#42115449) Homepage

    "the only thing universal healthcare brought you was waiting lines and mediocre care"

    you know nothing at all. Want to trot out the fake lie that "all the doctors will leave" because we all know that Canada has no doctors at all and is now a 3rd world country...

    Oh wait, they have BETTER doctors than the USA... and we should have adopted their Healthcare system. but no, Most americans are fucking retards so I'm stuck with the healthcare for the rich only system we have here.

  • Re:Denier (Score:4, Insightful)

    by K. S. Kyosuke ( 729550 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:19AM (#42115577)

    Do you really want to end up like greece?

    The Greeks ended up where they are because people got into government who should have gone into prison in the first place. (I still don't understand why they haven't reinstituted the death penalty for those people who have falsified Greek government accounting and caused the deaths of a few thousand people. That's mass murder to me.)

  • by dkleinsc ( 563838 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:44AM (#42115733) Homepage

    It's not like we need to move New York or Miami overnight.

    Yeah, it's not like New York City recently experienced severe flooding or something causing at least $60 billion worth of damage, killing a few people, and basically shutting the whole place down for days.

    As far as how much of a sea level rise is really really bad, see for yourself: []

    (Although I guessing some would be happy to see New Jersey or Washington DC underwater)

  • Re:I've given up (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:45AM (#42115739) Homepage

    Yes, because humans are completely incapable of adapting to a changing environment. I totally remember when the last glacial period wiped us all out.

    Things change. We change. Things go on. We go on.

    If you want to collapse civilisation, stop using fossil fuels. That'll do it.

  • Re:I've given up (Score:3, Insightful)

    by scarboni888 ( 1122993 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:50AM (#42115785)

    "but where do you put 16 million people?" - Just move them all to Israel since that seemed to work so well before for a group of people which claimed they had no nation.

    And I think you misunderstand what the deniers are denying. They are not denying that climate change is occurring. They are denying that the climate change is human-caused. They deny that there's anything we can do about climate change to stop it. But they're not denying the climate change themselves. Therefore when these mis-informed liberals make a move to get to a safe place what's more likely is that they'll find these 'deniers' already there, camped out, with guns.

  • Re:I've given up (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mdsharpe ( 1051460 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @08:54AM (#42115821)
    Your snarky reply implies that we cannot continue without fossil fuels. If that's true, then we're just as screwed once they run out. So, we can either transition to clean energy sooner, or later, or never - pick one.
  • Re:I've given up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ost99 ( 101831 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @09:35AM (#42116109)

    The entire human exodus from Africa was during the last glacial period. And it almost did wipe us out. At some point about 70 000 years ago (in the middle of the last glaciation period) the total human population shrunk to 2 000 individuals - that's one flu outbreak from extinction.

    The changes we are facing now are of a much more dramatic than the gradual cooling over millennia during the last glaciation (4-5 degrees cooling over millennia vs 4-10 degrees increase in less than a century). Absolutely best case if we don't do anything now is +4C in less than 100 years, that's a civilization ending change. Worst case places +4C in 30 years, and +10C within 100 years - that's an extinction level event. - And that's without the possible feedback loops from ocean CO2 release and methane release from the tundras.

  • Re:Denier (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tmosley ( 996283 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @09:50AM (#42116219)
    20% of GDP per capita for one additional year of life expectancy doesn't really seem worth it.
  • by khallow ( 566160 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @09:52AM (#42116249)

    Every estimate has been overly optimistic.

    I think we're confused over what "optimistic" means. In my book, a weaker AGW effect is more optimistic not less optimistic. The consistent theme here is that the general population isn't drinking enough kool aid, so the threats have been dialed up to oh, 2 or 3.

    Anyone not panicked at the thought of this IS A FOOL!

    Says the hysterical fool. Sorry, I don't buy that.

    Remember this ISN'T the bad this is the best we can expect for the next 100 years and it may get worse after that.

    Who knows, it might even bad enough that we notice some of the effects within the lifetimes of our grandchildren.

    Okay from a liberal here's how bad it can get, ever see Road Warrior???? That's bad. Good is probably Soylent Green. Any questions????

    Nope. Stupidity is not a good foundation for understanding or predicting reality.

  • by tmosley ( 996283 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @09:58AM (#42116313)
    This comment is sort of like an Italian criticizing Nazi Germany in 1939. Perhaps you have forgotten that your country and indeed pretty much the entire WORLD has been all too eager to assist the US government in perpetrating its crimes against humanity?

    Maybe it isn't the individual people that are the problem, but rather the politicians? Just maybe?
  • Wait... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sycodon ( 149926 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @10:05AM (#42116375)

    I thought the seas stopped rising in 2008...somewhere around January or February.

    Coulda sworn I heard that a zillion times.


  • by crazyjj ( 2598719 ) * on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @10:34AM (#42116675)

    Yes, because the U.S. is so evil and corrupt--as opposed to all of Africa, South America, Asia, most of the Middle East, etc. And despite never having had an empire to speak of--like Britain, France, Mongolia, Italy, Iran, etc.--the U.S. is clearly responsible for all the problems in the world. And when it comes to invading other countries, well, clearly no one compares to the U.S.--certainly an enlightened country like Britain would never consider something as brutish as invading 90% of the countries in the world []. Only the evil, uncouth U.S. does that!

    Yes, the U.S. is the cause of all your problems. You bear absolutely no responsibility for any of your own goddamned messes. It's all those evil Americans' fault.

  • Re:I've given up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by silentcoder ( 1241496 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @10:54AM (#42116923)

    >Biological systems can't be so fragile as all that, or we wouldn't be here.

    Wrong. 97% of all species that ever existed are extinct. The history of the earth is filled with massive extinction events wiping out damn near everything alive.
    Life is resilient, even if just a few bacteria survive, in a few million years there'll be a system with plants and animals again.
    But biological systems are incredibly fragile and quite regularly get wiped out.
    You probably KNOW about the dinosaurs, but that wasn't a rare event, the history of earth is littered with hundreds of extinction events - most of them WORSE than that one.

    Life starts over with the left-overs.

    Now see, that's good news in a sense - no matter how badly we fuck up - chances are we can't wipe out life on earth, earth will live on and in a few million years there'll be some other creature who asks "Why are we here ?" - but it's BAD news for us !
    Sufficient disturbance to the ballance and it collapses, and we go down with it (hint: the larger the creature the smaller it's chances of surviving an extinction event - we count as a large creature, small in this context means bacteria and single-celled sea-creatures).

  • by hanshotfirst ( 851936 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @11:52AM (#42117629)
    You seem to be confusing storm surge and a big*ss rain cloud with sea Levels rising. A few mm of sea rise didn't flood Manhattan. Your underlying point may well be valid, but your supporting argument of it doesn't float.
  • Re:I've given up (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BasilBrush ( 643681 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @01:13PM (#42118777)

    You have a city dweller's concept of how the world works. You're going to starve to death.

  • Re:Denier (Score:4, Insightful)

    by prefec2 ( 875483 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @01:24PM (#42118975)

    the problem with too much military spending is a problem in the US. You waste much more money of your GDP for the military than other Western countries. However, this is not the main problem. The main problem is that the taxes do not suffice to pay for all the social benefits. So you either get rid of the social benefits or have to raise taxes.

    In the last 30 years, all Western countries have reduced the taxes for rich people. As Warren Buffet pointed out, he is paying 17% taxes, while most people pay 30%. In Germany the situation is similar. Taxes on your salary go from 15% up to 42% for high incomes. However, profits made on the capital market is only taxed with 20%.

    One problem with taxes on these kinds of income are, if you raise them too much, people move their money to Switzerland, Luxembourg or the Cayman Islands (there are ways in preventing that, but politicians look deliberately in the other direction).

    The other option is to reduce social benefits or be consequent and do not have any. While this sounds like a simple solution, it results in a lot of other problems. A country, or a group of people live together. they are interdependent. If one group raises to much above the others, they tend to disconnect (happened in history several times). As the richer groups tend then to turn their back on the rest (not necessarily to everyone, but to the majority) and stop understanding their situation, they steer up resentments on the other end. When those lower class people, start to have problems sustaining their present level, which often means they have to move to cheaper and less habitable quarters. Such environment creates the general feeling that you cannot achieve anything. You can struggle, but in the end you fail. When living in that environment, the times get harder, people tend to violence. Rich people normally call then for the state to protect them. When that does not help, they build guarded homes and villages. Shutting out the poor. You can visit that situation in South Africa.

    In such a situation, it can happen, and it has happened, that the poor start some sort of revolt. The main trigger for the revolt in Egypt and other states in northern Africa, and also in Syria, are the poor condition, and the disconnectedness of the ruling class.

    It is absolutely clear that such a situation is even for the ruling class very uncomfortable and undesirable. Therefore, we have to sustain the option for everyone that we care for his or her basic needs. This cuts violence between people in lower classes and towards the middle class. Furthermore, we have to provide the means that people can evolve. They must be empowered. If so they can find their place in live. Not everyone needs to become rich or even strive for it. Happiness or other contexts of wellbeing can be achieved in different way. However, they correlate highly with guaranteed human rights, which include education, medical care, care of elderly, security, housing, a task or work with which you can identify, fair working conditions etc. (see []).

    The only working solution to the above problems is social security systems. Especially those who tend to empower people, like the one in Sweden. Not so much like the system in Germany. And definitely not like the US system.

    On a side note: If you look at the total debt of the US government (and therefor the citizens) plus the debt of private households it adds up quite well with the amount of money the upper 10% of your country own. In Germany it is quite similar. Recently they released the latest poverty report for Germany. The government cheated a bit in the summary, but the data is telling another story. Their cutting of social benefits did not help. More people have jobs, but they cannot live from the money they get. So they get state money, which still costs the the state money, my tax money.

    So to solve your math problem, which is actually a calculus problem,

  • Re:IPCC politics (Score:4, Insightful)

    by nysus ( 162232 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @01:44PM (#42119313)

    This data you link to from NOAA does not refute anything. The rate of rise has accelerated over the past few decades.

    You were rightfully moderated into oblivion the first time.

  • Re:I've given up (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jackbird ( 721605 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @03:27PM (#42120951)

    Really? Did you see what happened when PARTS of New York City's gasoline and electric distribution were interrupted for 10 days or so at the start of the month? With well-fed volunteers and plenty of electricity and gasoline right nearby?

  • Re:Denier (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DeadCatX2 ( 950953 ) on Wednesday November 28, 2012 @05:20PM (#42122473) Journal

    You wanna talk quality?

    Name any "socialist" country with universal health care that has had a fungal meningitis outbreak.

    Consider whether the fungal meningitis outbreak had anything to do with the profit motive of corporations who considered making a quick buck more important than ensuring sterile conditions for their drugs.

In less than a century, computers will be making substantial progress on ... the overriding problem of war and peace. -- James Slagle