Climate Change and Sea Level Rise

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Sea-level rise is a main consequence of climate change. People think of global warming and climate change as substitutes, but then researchers choose to use climate change when telling the multifaceted changes now affecting our earth’s weather and climate systems. In the future, higher sea levels would cause serious impacts in numerous parts of the world especially the Pacific Islands. Are the small islands of the South Pacific in danger of vanishing, draught, under the waves of the rising ocean? Will thousands of people be forced to relocate? As you will read along, this paper consists information in relation to factors causing sea-level, effects on environments/places and the rising of sea level in the Pacific. In addition, this paper will cover the effects of the rising sea level partakes on the people of Aunu’u.

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“Major factors that determine recent climate change and sea level change are thermal expansion of sea water and melting of land-based ice. The latter includes melting and outflow of the ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica.” With that brings us back to the extreme changes in the climate conditions with the green house gases emission that can cause the glaciers to melt which will as a result cause the sea water to heat and expand thermally. That expansion causes the sea level to rise because the water warms up due to continuously climate conditions.

Secondly, the change in the sea level can also relate to the land-based ice which is melting at a rapid speed due to global warming and the emission of the green house gases. Since most of the stored water on land is found in the form of glaciers and ice sheets, this means that melt down of these forms will result in the sea level increase. “A third, much smaller contributor to sea level rise is a decline in water storage on land—aquifers, lakes and reservoirs, rivers, soil moisture—mostly as a result of groundwater pumping, which has shifted water from aquifers to the ocean.”

The melting and thermal expansion were contributing bumpily similarly to the detected sea level rise. However, the melting of glaciers and ice sheets has increased rapidly, and over the past decade, the amount of sea level rise due to melting—with a small accumulation from groundwater transfer and other water storage shifts—has been nearly twice the amount of sea level rise due to thermal expansion. Think of it like a thermometer: as it gets hotter, it expands and shoots skyward. A warming ocean rises the same way, getting higher as it gets hotter.

In the Pacific Ocean, “recently at least five reef islands in the remote Solomon Islands have been lost completely to sea-level rise and coastal erosion, and a further six islands have been severely eroded. These islands lost to the sea range in size from one to five hectares. For the past years, the Solomon Islands have been a hot area for sea-level rise. The sea level has risen at almost three times the global average, around 7-10 mm per year since 1993. This higher rate is partially the consequence of natural climate erraticism. These higher rates are consistent with what we can assume across much of the Pacific as a result of human-induced sea-level rise.

On August, there was a flood that occurred in Aunu’u, a small volcanic island off the southeastern shore of Tutuila in American Samoa. It has a land area of 375 acres and a population of about 475 persons. This incident has driven residents to ask the government to deal with sea damaging homes and schools. The sea-level rise threatens substructure essential for local jobs and local businesses. Roads, homes, schools, water supplies, power plants—the list is almost boundless—are all at danger from sea level rise.

I conducted an interview with some of the residents to hear their perspective and their views on the sea-level issue. One of the residents, who did not want to be named said that the government leaders must act and see the damage for themselves. The second resident, who is a government worker, said that there were times the power was off for several hours because ocean waves rolled into the area where the power generator plant is located. The third resident, High Chief Mago said that one of his main concerns is children getting caught by waves washing across the road.

The flood in Aunu’u has convinced the people to migrate to higher ground, and they are defenseless from flood risk and other climate change effects. One of the issues that was mentioned by the residents is that the water levels threatens basic services such as Internet access, since much of the fundamental communications setup lies in the pathway of rising seas. At the conclusion of my interview, the residents are already planning adaptation actions to survive with the long-term forecasts of higher sea levels, often at substantial cost. That includes building seawalls, reconsidering roads, and planting something to captivate water are all being undertaken.

The image of a sinking island has become a strong symbol for climate change in the tropics, and as sea levels rise faster here than anywhere else in the word, most research forecasts these low-lying islands will be flooded by the end of the period. However, with the climate conditions, there are other threats that could come a whole lot rather. Research proposes that as sea levels rise, some islands might run out of freshwater long before they run out of land. Still, on most emerging islands in the Pacific, freshwater is already an endangered supply. On many populated islands, the main source is rain that is soaked into the soil and collected as groundwater. Yet as sea levels continue to increase and flooding becomes more recurrent, the ground on these islands might also start to grip seawater.

“Responses to climate change fall into two broad measures, mitigation and adaptation. Mitigation is to stabilize the climate system through the reduction of GHG emissions and sequestration of GHGs by forests, etc . As mitigation intends to keep climate change within the level to which human society and the environment can adjust, it can be measured to evade an incontrollable state brought by a weighty climate change.

Adaptation, in order, is to decrease the opposing impacts of climate change using a range of measures such as disaster risk reduction and increased resilience of food production and fresh water supplies. “Even if mitigation succeeds in achieving the goal of stabilization, climate change will still proceed to a certain extent, resulting in some impacts on sectors and regions. Therefore, adaptation is considered a measure to prepare for an unavoidable impact.

Sea-level rising is a scary scenario but there is still time to act and adapt. We can see that the sea-level rise issue includes a tremendously extensive variety of castigations from natural science and practical sciences to social sciences and humanities. As mentioned in this paper, there has been progress in each area, coming up with new ideas to measuring sea level, interested by high interest through the world. However, there are still barriers to upsurge scientific understanding and precision of the approximations for linking research outcomes to create more operative countermeasures in contradiction of the effects of sea-level rise.

There are numerous things that the government can do to avoid global warming from continuing to happen, like working with and encouraging large businesses to use greener methods of work. Some things we can do to avert this issue include recycling things that can be recycled or reusing things that can be reused, like donating them or using them for something else. We can substitute our glowing light bulbs with florescent bulbs because they last longer and are better for the earth. These are just a few simple things we can do to help avoid global warming and rising sea levels.            

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