The increase in the level of the oceans is accelerating

News 12 February, 2018
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    Monday, 12 February 2018 17:46

    Monday, 12 February 2018 17:46

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    The rise of the oceans is accelerating, and the water level could rise by 65 cm by the end of the century, a figure consistent with the estimates of the united Nations and which could pose serious problems for coastal cities, reports a study published Monday.

    The pace of the annual increase in the level of the oceans, which is approximately 3 millimeters per year currently, could more than triple to reach 10 extra millimeters per year by 2100, according to data published in the proceedings of the american Academy of sciences (PNAS).

    The results of this work based on information collected by satellites during 25 years “are pretty much in agreement with the projections in the report AR5 (submitted in 2014, editor’s NOTE) of the group of experts of the UN climate change (IPCC)”.

    “This acceleration, caused mainly by the accelerated melting of the Greenland and the Antarctic, can potentially double the total increase in the level of the oceans by 2100, compared to the projections which assumed that the increase would be constant,” explained the lead author of the study, Steve Nerem, professor of aerospace engineering at the University of Colorado.

    With this increase, which accelerates each year, the level of the oceans would increase, and more than 60 centimetres by the end of the century, according to professor Nerem. “And this of course is a conservative estimate,” he warned.

    Climate change is causing rising oceans due to two phenomena: the rapid melting of the ice in the poles and the increased concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

    This phenomenon warms the temperature of the water. However, the hot-water – less dense than cold water – it takes up more space. This mechanism is already responsible for half of the seven inches of increase recorded in the last 25 years, always according to professor Nerem.

    “This study highlights the important role that can be played by the satellite data collected to validate models of the projections on the climate”, for its part, said John Fasullo, a climate scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and co-author of the study.