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Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Re: Arctic Sea Ice 2017 Pt. 1

Unread postby Subjectivist » Sat 13 May 2017, 17:09:38

Whitefang wrote:10 meters SLR by 2100 is ok?

No more lowlands on this planet, my Netherlands will be swamped above a mere 2 meters by say 2040 or so.
The famous deltaplan took about 4 decades to built and tremendous expenses, dry up to 5 meters NAP. Zeeland will be sea again, I live at less than a meter above sea level between Antwerpen and Rotterdam.

I bet half our worldly harvest comes from the fertile land between zero to 10 meters altitude.
There is simply no happy ending with upcoming flood and loss of food.

Oh....New Orléans and NYC Sandy affair were overnight disasters.

Heinrich events are not gradual but abrupt changes, like death a sudden disaster
The Aboriginals still have oral experience stored in their culture of such an event happening 10 millenia ago, the last great flood when the ice age ended, cid his thing on the doggerbank I suppose.
Gave rise to the great barrier reef.

The GIS is a remnant just like the relic arctic sea icecap, together they can be there but if one goes down the other will collapse as well.
I think the last great melt were gradual compared to the upcoming event because it is the last of the ice, like a lake in spring, one day the ice is just fine but thin, next it is gone.
With all those feedbacks upon feedbacks, it is likely to be gone as in forever, like an extinction event taking 5 to 10 milllion years to recover.

Famous last words.....we'll adept :oops:

I hope you are right Tanada but I am not taking chances, I am building my liferaft just in case. I think I see that white line on the horizon and I am making a run for the hills :-D

Aren't we all preppers? We just like to know in order to prepare, and just for the heck of it, out of curiousity, to want to know, a human thing I think therfore I am?

Anyway, like everyone I want more time on this mysterious Earth, a place of magic and I am gearing up for survival.


There will be plenty of lowlands left after a 10 meter rise, they will just be a different set than the current bunch of land. The Netherlands is acrather special case if we are all honest with ourselves, ane New Orleans has been doomed since the Mississippi river was diked and prevented from depositing silt in the lowland which has allowed erosion to steal away the entire coast formerly built by that silt deposit. Denmark and The Netherlands face crisis from sea level rise, but other than the coastal areas 95% of America has no risk from 10 meters. The average altitude in this country is thousands of feet above sea level and includes over half the states which have no ocean coast. Losing Florida is not a happy event, but for the country it is an adjustment moving people upland, not the end of civilization.
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Re: Arctic Sea Ice 2017 Pt. 1

Unread postby Newfie » Sun 14 May 2017, 07:18:45

dissident wrote:
Newfie wrote:From my perspective one needs to be flexible and mobile.

We don't know the timetable of change, it may be fast.

We have places in the higher latitudes but are currently living where we don't need heat or AC. Although it would have been damn nice this week when it was 100 here in Florida, but that's only temporary as we prep to move North for the summer. :)


You can be mobile. But urban infrastructure is not. Moving a city is beyond expensive. It is not affordable even in rich countries. So the mobility forced by sea level rise will be of the Grapes of Wrath variety. Except that there will not be enough developed regions to absorb the refugee flow. The dystopias that envision masses of poor in the cities of the future look to be the most realistic. But those cities will not last long as the agricultural collapse progresses. Some soylent green will not save humanity.



Dis,
At this point I'm not worrying a out saving cities or our culture. I'm just worried about my sorry ass and my family. That's enough worry for little ol me.

In general I agree with your points and have been making similar points myself. All one has the do is to look at NYC to see that they have only superficially recovered from Sandy. The city itself elremains vulnerable. Mayor Goldburg's grand plans came to naught. Coulda, woulda, shoulda become didn't.
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Re: Arctic Sea Ice 2017 Pt. 1

Unread postby dohboi » Sun 14 May 2017, 09:56:42

T claims that ten meters by 2100 is no problem because on a year-by-year basis it is incremental.

Two points, for now:

It takes decades to build a new city, so year-by-year incrementalism is actually your enemy, since it creeps up on you and you don't realize what kind of planning has to be done for actions that take many years to decades to unfold.

Also, as has also been repeated innumerable times, apparently to deaf ears...but here we go again: the average increase is incremental. But how this will be experienced is minor 'nuisance' flooding most years, and then a major storm comes along--that is now sitting on top of already elevated sea levels and is super juiced with lots of extra heat and moisture--and it basically wipes out lots of city, kills tons of people, and destroys infrastructure, much of which, if planning had happened, could have been moved out of harms way to higher ground, or never built there in the first place.

Looking at long-term average rise is quite naive--like someone seeing that his chances of a heart attack increase only incrementally into his old age, and thinking he can probably adapt to that! Then one day...BAM! Surprise!

And of course in some places the sea level rise will be much faster and less predictable, especially along the Eastern Seaboard were slight shifts in the position of currents can raise local sea levels rather suddenly and considerably.
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Re: Arctic Sea Ice 2017 Pt. 1

Unread postby Newfie » Sun 14 May 2017, 20:35:31

Dohboi,

Given our age, you and me and Tanada, I don't think SLR will be a major factor in our lifetime. Global financial collapse? Now that could be interesting!
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Re: Arctic Sea Ice 2017 Pt. 1

Unread postby Tanada » Sun 14 May 2017, 21:41:55

dohboi wrote:T claims that ten meters by 2100 is no problem because on a year-by-year basis it is incremental.

Two points, for now:

It takes decades to build a new city, so year-by-year incrementalism is actually your enemy, since it creeps up on you and you don't realize what kind of planning has to be done for actions that take many years to decades to unfold.

Also, as has also been repeated innumerable times, apparently to deaf ears...but here we go again: the average increase is incremental. But how this will be experienced is minor 'nuisance' flooding most years, and then a major storm comes along--that is now sitting on top of already elevated sea levels and is super juiced with lots of extra heat and moisture--and it basically wipes out lots of city, kills tons of people, and destroys infrastructure, much of which, if planning had happened, could have been moved out of harms way to higher ground, or never built there in the first place.

Looking at long-term average rise is quite naive--like someone seeing that his chances of a heart attack increase only incrementally into his old age, and thinking he can probably adapt to that! Then one day...BAM! Surprise!

And of course in some places the sea level rise will be much faster and less predictable, especially along the Eastern Seaboard were slight shifts in the position of currents can raise local sea levels rather suddenly and considerably.


This is where our world views fundamentally differ. You seem to be saying the only way for a city to move up slope from the coast is to plan out a new city 5-25 miles inland from the coastal city, build it, then Voile' move the residents and businesses to the new city.

I see it very differently. I see builders constructing new stuff on the up slope edge of the city, and continuing to do so for decades to come. As the seaward edge of the city is lost the 'new suburbs' up slope will grow and become functional units in their own right. Realistically most of the beach front lost is spotty in terms of population, it seems from my travels down the east coast a few years ago the wealthy build on the ocean side of the freeway and the less wealthy build further away. As the sea encroaches those wealthy folks will use their wealth to buy out the less well to do whose homes will be becoming beach property a few years down the road.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Squilliam » Sun 14 May 2017, 22:11:40

The more important consideration than sea level rise is what we are doing with respect to this force of nature. Putting down a temporary structure whose life expectancy is less than the time it will take to engulf by rising seas is perfectly fine. On the other hand if people continue to build structures near the coast that would otherwise be expected to be used for up to a hundred years then their short-sightedness will likely be decried in the future. In this respect we probably ought to do better than we currently are.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby dohboi » Sun 14 May 2017, 23:35:36

T, I hope we can agree that, yes, the wealthy will be relatively untouched by most of this, and will screw everyone else in the process of their trying to get out of harms way. Including getting the rest of us to pay for insurance for their risky investments in sea-side property, and so much else.

I'm glad that somehow comforts me.

I, for some reason, have different reactions...

Newf, yes, slr is not what is going to hit hardest or fastest for most.

But, ummm, this is, after all, the slr thread...so...that's why we're talking about it here.

And of course 'in our lifetimes' it is already driving myriads out of their homes around the world, and if we live the long life that seems to be our dubious blessing, we will see many millions more faced with direct assaults from the sea as well as salt water intrusions well inland that make otherwise livable communities untenable.

This isn't some kind of futuristic SciFi, folks. This is happening to real people, now, in real time, all over the globe. We don't have to speculate about effects. They are upon us. And many, many more are to come. And none of us know exactly what the timeline will be for each of them.

But if y'all want to insist that everything will always and only proceed incrementally, at a pace that can easily be accommodated by everyone...well, that's a wonderful fantasy, and I think you should stick to it. Please do ignore all the voluminous evidence to the contrary...it's pretty grim stuff to contemplate, after all. And life is to short to live in anything other than a fact-averse la la world of rosy-colored-glass world views. So don't let me or the facts get in anyone's way. I (and facts) am clearly not what the current political situation calls for. It seems to be more and more a post fact and post me world...so maybe I really should take the cue...exit left... :) :cry:

ETA: Just as a reminder of where we are and where we're headed:

global average temperature in the mid-Pliocene (3.3–3 mya) was 2–3 °C higher than today,and carbon dioxide levels were the same as today [~400 ppm, but current CO2e is closer to 500ppm], global sea level 25 m higher


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pliocene
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Ibon » Mon 15 May 2017, 01:48:23

It was Seagypsy who said in another thread that we are like family carrying on a very long conversation. Instead of just a sound bite and then moving on we have a pretty interesting opportunity here to carry on a conversation that could conceivably last a couple of decades and reality will certainly be trumping a lot of our assumptions regarding SLR and related topics.

With a bit of tongue in cheek I mentioned that we are creating a cornucopia of consequences of which SLR is but one. What most of us would agree with here is that we have moved beyond that window where we can actually mitigate or steer the outcome as these consequences are more and more baked into the cake of physical reality moving forward.

Taking all that into consideration as time passes we are all becoming more and more observers of reality and physical consequences and less and less having an ideological debate about what we should do. Some of us have been having a 40 year long conversation around this topic albeit not always with the same folks and this has been the most significant shift in the past 40 years, moving from a time when ideological debates could have steered us one way or another to currently being left with really only being witnesses to consequences largely baked into the cake.

In this sense there is really very little debate left except to debate on the severity of consequences we can do nothing about. There is something a bit tragic about this and frankly kind of a waste of time.

I guess insurance assessors would disagree with this regarding SLR as they assess risk moving forward. It is not a waste of time for them to consider the consequences baked into the cake.

In a way we are all like these insurance assessors, considering risks in an increasingly destabilizing world as the environmental externalities come home to roost.

It leaves us little choice but to be somewhat clinical about what lies before us.
Even in regard to those who will suffer the worst.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby dohboi » Mon 15 May 2017, 05:43:10

"cornucopia of consequences"

I like that. And pretty much everything else in that post.

Nicely worded.

I'm still worried about your Florida property, but I'm sure your timing will be impeccable.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 15 May 2017, 07:38:29

Tanada,

I can understand your explanation with regards to coastal communities to a point. But even there it has its limits. The barrier Islands along the NJ coast for example. At some point they will be over topped and the island itself will no longer be habitable. Much of the Florida coast is similar.

New York City and Norfolk are different. In Norfolk you have the huge naval base that is under attack from SLR but also ground water subsidence and the whole impact crater thing.

NYC has much infrastructure that was built on filled or "reclaimed" land. And that includes rail yards and airports and substantial housing. A substantial amount of the infrastructure resides below sea level now including the various train/subway system and the sewage system. The "planners" are thinking in terms of a few feet, maybe 6, of SLR. And that's for new work. Very little remediation work, if any.

That's where I think your argument falls down. It's not just moving oceanfront McMansions back. Manhattan is simply not viable without the subway/sewer system. And that, because of the interconnections, is extremely vulnerable. There may well be other fault mechanisms I'm not thinking of, these are bad enough.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Tanada » Mon 15 May 2017, 08:26:49

Newfie wrote:Tanada,

I can understand your explanation with regards to coastal communities to a point. But even there it has its limits. The barrier Islands along the NJ coast for example. At some point they will be over topped and the island itself will no longer be habitable. Much of the Florida coast is similar.

New York City and Norfolk are different. In Norfolk you have the huge naval base that is under attack from SLR but also ground water subsidence and the whole impact crater thing.

NYC has much infrastructure that was built on filled or "reclaimed" land. And that includes rail yards and airports and substantial housing. A substantial amount of the infrastructure resides below sea level now including the various train/subway system and the sewage system. The "planners" are thinking in terms of a few feet, maybe 6, of SLR. And that's for new work. Very little remediation work, if any.

That's where I think your argument falls down. It's not just moving oceanfront McMansions back. Manhattan is simply not viable without the subway/sewer system. And that, because of the interconnections, is extremely vulnerable. There may well be other fault mechanisms I'm not thinking of, these are bad enough.


I have no doubt these are all substantial problems and will lead to differing answers. The issue of the barrier islands is somewhat separate because as I understand it they have been eroding substantially with every hurricane that blows through. They are likely going to be absent well before SLR would have sunk them completely beneath the waves.

Norfolk is a special case because of the impact crater. The navy has two minds about it, one wants to close the base and relocate to a more long term viable spot using Eminent Domain if necessary to acquire the land to do so. The other faction wants to defend the existing base and/or keep studying the problem oping to find a miracle solution.

NYC on the other hand is anything but a special case because Los Angeles and especially San Fransisco have also done a lot of sea front land fill and then built on it. All of these cities will have to make some very hard choices about how to get through SLR, either by migrating the city wholesale up slope, or attempting to build defenses like New Orleans which is about 75% below sea level already. I suspect for the really big proud cities that can find a viable dike solution they will attempt to defend in place and spend copious amounts of money in the process. This goes for Philadelphia and Boston and Halifax, Canada as well.

But, outside of the truly big cities my map of Massachusetts and Maine show that most of the coastline is small towns or private land. New Hampshire only has a small section of shore around Portsmouth so with the whole state paying they might manage to defend that patch of ground, but Maine is low population and Massachusetts is not nearly wealthy enough to defend it whole shoreline. In these states you may end up with new levee enclosed cities of Boston and Portland forming islands off from the new shore line.

Every sea coast will be different because of multiple factors, for one those closer to the equator will see a greater variation and for another local geography and subsidence may play a large role. IIRC North Carolina is still subsiding as the crust goes back down in the absence of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. In the same way Michigan and Ohio and Hudson's Bay are still rising North Carolina and Tennessee and still settling lower, but most of their land is mountains so the few feet left to go will not make a huge difference except along the Carolina coast.

The crucial thing to remember is two parts, sea level rise in inexorable, we can not stop it, and it is gradual, not Hollywood Tsunami style change.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Ibon » Mon 15 May 2017, 08:49:15

One thing about barrier islands is that long before sea level rise became a threat they were recognized as unstable geological features for building on since they are constantly shifting, either growing or shrinking with the changing hydrodynamics that happen after major storms, hurricanes, changing river channels in estuaries. Many barrier islands have required expensive beach regeneration efforts for decades long before climate change became a threat. I remember Miami Beach in the 60's was already losing beach front.

The big issue here on eventual outcomes is economics. Money and technology can do a lot but priorities may really one day later this century start shifting investments and public works projects toward long term strategies.

The insurance industry and the banks will be the key players in shifting economic priorities in how they will affect land values. No mortgages without flood insurance for coastal properties and rates making them not affordable one day will affect land and housing prices. How long will the government guarantee flood insurance ?

There are only so many 1% 's willing and able to throw their money to the wind.....and sea.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Cog » Mon 15 May 2017, 08:51:32

I think we can handle less than a 2mm rise in sea level a year.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby kiwichick » Mon 15 May 2017, 11:56:22

@ cog .....average global sea level rise is now 3.2 mm per year......double the 20th century average......and of course we are now heading towards a average temp. rise of 1.5 degrees C....enough to rapidly destabilize both the GIS and WAIS.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Cog » Mon 15 May 2017, 13:04:09

kiwichick wrote:@ cog .....average global sea level rise is now 3.2 mm per year......double the 20th century average......and of course we are now heading towards a average temp. rise of 1.5 degrees C....enough to rapidly destabilize both the GIS and WAIS.


No it isn't.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby dohboi » Mon 15 May 2017, 13:52:06

Cog, you're right. It's not 3.2 mm/yr. More like 3.4 now! :) :)

https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/sea-level/

But then again the margin of error would encompass 3.2, so you are kinda wrong (and really wrong if I understand the nature of your actual objection).

T wrote: "...not...tsunami..."

But in fact most people will indeed have their wake up moment wrt slr during, if not a tsunami, at least in a major storm surge. That is when people will realize that the relative benign seeming creep upward in where the ocean seems to splash against the shore actually translates into destroyed homes, wrecked infrastructure, and lives literally washed out to sea when storms do arrive. They will suddenly see (if they survive) that are much, much less safe now than they used to be when the sea becomes angry, which it will do with greater and greater intensity as GW progresses.

But no, it won't be quite like The Day After Tomorrow.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Cog » Mon 15 May 2017, 14:18:51

Like I said,

https://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltre ... gional.htm

The absolute global sea level rise is believed to be 1.7-1.8 millimeters/year.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 15 May 2017, 14:41:54

Cog wrote:Like I said,

https://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltre ... gional.htm

The absolute global sea level rise is believed to be 1.7-1.8 millimeters/year.


Yes, the average of sea level rise in the 20th century was about 1.8 mm/yr. Thats absolutely correct. However, that is an AVERAGE of all the data for the entire 20th century. When you look at the data more closely on a year by year basis you find that the rate of global sea level is gradually accelerating--- rising from about 0.4 mm/yr at the start of the 20th century to about 3.41 mm/yr now.

NOAA ---where your number comes from---measures sea level using tide gauges. The NOAA data is not as good as the NASA data in my figure posed below because some local sites with NOAA tide gauges are going down, like the entire whole Mississippi Delta where subsidence of the delta sediments is occurring. NASA, in contrast, measures global sea level using laser surveying technology of the ocean surface---it measures all the world's oceans rather point sampling at local sites as NOAA does, and the NASA method is very very accurate. There isn't any doubt about the accuracy about the current 3.41 mm/yr rate of sea level rise determined by NASA.

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The current rate of global sea level rise is about 3.4 mm/yr.

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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Cog » Mon 15 May 2017, 15:25:12

It balances out because some of the tidal gauges are rising due to craton uplift, which is still going on after the ice sheets melted from the North American continent. But fine we will go with 3mm if it pleases you.

So after a century we get 300 mm of sea level rise or about 1 foot more or less. I think I can keep up with the "flood" with a kid's sandbucket and visit to the beach once a year.
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Re: Sea Level Rise Pt. 2

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 15 May 2017, 16:08:20

Cog wrote:fine we will go with 3mm if it pleases you.


It doesn't matter if it pleases me or not. The satellite laser altimetry data is pretty definitive that sea level is currently rising at ca. 3.4 mm/yr.

Cog wrote:So after a century we get 300 mm of sea level rise or about 1 foot more or less. I think I can keep up with the "flood" with a kid's sandbucket and visit to the beach once a year.


Yup. You've done the math just right. That doesn't sound too bad, does it? And thats exactly how the UN IPCC made its predictions of how much sea level rise we will get.

However, lets look at the numbers more closely. That 3.4 mm/yr rate for sea level rise is the CURRENT rate, but 100 years ago it was only about 1 mm/yr, i.e. the rate of sea level has tripled in a century as the world warmed by ca. 1.3°C...and it will likely get even higher. As the climate continues to warm, the rate of glacier melting and concomitant sea level rise will also continue to increase. Its entirely possible in 100 years the rate of sea level rise will triple again to something over 1 cm/year. Then we'd be looking at about 1 m (3.3 feet) of sea level rise per century, or roughly 4 inches every 10 years. AND it may go even higher than that---it depends on how much more global warming we get.

And then we've got a wild card----we can get catastrophic and unstoppable glacier retreat in Greenland and Antarctica if the ice retreats just a little in certain spots where the base of the glacier lies below sea level. A recent mathematical model for this kind of event published in NATURE predicted several meters of sea level rise occurring quite rapidly.

This is a very realistic projection. I personally helped put in a time lapse camera system at the LeConte glacier in SE Alaska to photograph this kind of "calving retreat" of a tidewater glacier. Its very impressive when the glaciers collapse into the sea----.

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