The sea rise rate around the world is at its fastest in the past 2,800 years and due mostly to global warming, Scientific American
magazine reported on Monday based on research released by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Authors of the sea level study
said that at last 50 percent of the more than five-inch increase in the 20th century was directly due to global warming. Temperatures have risen nearly two degrees since the 1800s.
"During the past millennia, sea level has never risen nearly as fast as during the last century," Potsdam University physics professor Sefan Rahmstorf, one of 10 authors of the paper, told Scientific American. "That was to be expected, since global warming inevitably leads to rising seas."
"The new sea level data confirm once again just how unusual the age of modern global warming, due to our greenhouse gas emissions, is. They also demonstrate that one of the most dangerous impacts of global warming, namely rising seas, is well underway."
Researchers created a database of sea-level indicators from the around the world, which included marshes, coral atolls and archaeological areas. They found that global sea levels were somewhat steady for roughly 3,000 years but rose more rapidly during the "Industrial Revolution," said USA Today
reporting on the study..
Some cities are already feeling the impact of rising sea levels, said USA Today. Portions of Norfolk, Virginia; Charleston, South Carolina; and Miami already flood at high tide without the aid of rain, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
A second study looking at the future of rising seas levels, also released Monday by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, predicted that sea levels will continue to rise because of global warming.
"The rate of sea level rise will keep increasing with continued global warming, and, even if temperatures are stabilized through the phasing out of greenhouse gas emissions, sea level is still expected to rise for centuries," said the second study's abstract.
Global warming and how much humans have an impact on it have long been debated.
"I have studied this topic seriously for years," John Coleman, co-founder of The Weather Channel wrote to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change last year, according to Express.com
. "It has become a political and environment agenda item, but the science is not valid."
"There is no significant man-made global warming at this time, there has been none in the past and there is no reason to fear any in the future."
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