When the life on earth is going to an end and what the threats can be to the existence of mankind, is always being a hot topic around the globe.
According to the latest from NASA, there can be a rise in sea levels up to 3 feet. Steven Nerem of the University of Colorado said, we are “locked into at least 3 feet of sea level rise, and probably more.”
The dire prediction was matched with a further warning that it’s too late to do anything about the threat as temperatures soar across the globe.
Nerem said experts now think a rise in sea levels toward “the higher end of that range is more likely, and the question remains how that range might have to shift upwards.”
The agency says more than a third of the global population – around 2.4bn people – live within 60 miles of an ocean and cities such as Dhaka in Bangladesh could be partially submerged within 20 years. New Orleans, which is still feeling the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is one of the other cities which could be in danger.
Steve Nerem, lead researcher on Nasa’s Sea Level Change Team, said the three-feet rise could come about as early as 2100
“When heat goes under the ocean, it expands just like mercury in a thermometer. That expansion means more mass for the ocean and a higher sea level overall.”
What’s behind the rising seas?
There are three main causes for rising sea levels: The expansion of warmer ocean water, melting mountain glaciers, and ice loss from the massive Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets.
The Jakobshavn Glacier, the fastest moving glacier in Greenland, recently broke off a piece of ice large enough to cover the island of Manhattan in ice roughly 1,000 feet thick, according to the European Space Agency.
The glacier drains more ice-melt from Greenland into the ocean and contributes more to sea level rise than any other feature in the Northern Hemisphere.
If the entire ice sheet in Greenland melted completely, global sea levels would rise around 20 feet, and while this total loss would likely take many centuries to occur, sea levels would rise “as much as 10 feet in a century or two,” according to NASA scientist and ice expert Tom Wagner.
Many climate experts say temperatures are rising faster than at any point in our known history and that it is largely because of human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels.
NASA’s increased focus on climate change and rising sea levels is not just about future projections. The agency also is demonstrating the past change in a first-of-its-kind visualization of the entire 23-year satellite record of global sea levels.
The agency is using satellite instruments so accurate that NASA Earth Science Division Director Mike Freilich said that if they were “mounted on a jetliner flying at 40,000 feet, they could detect the bump caused by a dime lying flat on the ground.”