Sea Level Rise Surprise

Driving the seemingly endless climate-treaty negotiations, the most widely feared consequence of Global Warming appears to be a catastrophic rise in sea level (SLR).  Environmental advocacy groups are filling the airwaves with lurid images of flooding of Bangladesh and Pacific islands, and raising the specter of hundreds of millions of environmental refugees demanding care and compensation.  Even sober scientists, while not endorsing such obvious scare stories, predict an acceleration of the ongoing global rise, which a system of tidal gauges places at about 18 cm (7 inches) during the 20th century.  Economists concerned with trying to estimate a 'social cost' of carbon-dioxide emissions predict huge economic losses from future SLR.  Not surprisingly, insurance companies, looking to raise premiums, are cheering them on. However, more detailed analyses of actual observations suggest an opposite outcome: A climate warming might even slow down SLR -- rather than...(Read Full Article)

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