Researchers have taken a closer look at estimates of coastal land height – and found that the numbers of people already at risk from sea level rise driven by global heating have multiplied threefold. More than 100 million people already live below the high tide line, and 250 million live on plains that are lower than the current annual flood heights. Previous estimates have put these numbers at 28 million, and 65 million. And even if the world takes immediate drastic action and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by the end of the century, at least 190 million people will find themselves below sea level. If the world’s nations continue on the notorious business-as-usual track and go on burning ever greater volumes of fossil fuels, then around 630 million will, by the year 2100, find themselves on land that will be below the expected annual flood levels.
Climate News Network 4th Nov 2019 read more »
Some climate campaigners are already sailing to Chile to take part in the United Nations’ 25th Conference of the Parties, so the summit’s cancellation due to unrest in the country is a big problem – and not just for them, writes Dr Richard Dixon. Last week we had the shock news that the Chilean government was no longer willing to host the UN climate conference in the capital Santiago in early December. The mass civil unrest, protesting against the growing inequalities being driven by President Sebastián Piñera’s policies, made the country too unstable to safely hold a huge international conference. This is the second country to drop out of hosting the 25th Conference of the Parties (COP25). Brazil bid for and won the right to host the two-week event but when President Jair Bolsonaro came to power, he seemed more interested in burning the Amazon to make way for loggers, soy farmers and cattle ranchers, and so refused to organise the COP.
Scotsman 4th Nov 2019 read more »
Global greenhouse gas emissions up to 2030 could be enough to raise sea levels by more than one metre by 2300, a new study suggests. The research, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, estimates this to be the long-term level of sea level rise, even if countries around the world meet the emissions reduction pledges they put forward under the Paris Agreement. The five biggest emitters would contribute around 25% of this projected rise, the study says, with China accounting for 10cm by 2300, followed by the US with 7cm, the 28 member countries of the EU with 5cm, and India and Russia each with 2cm. The lead author tells Carbon Brief that the findings highlight “that near-term emissions reductions are absolutely mandatory to limit long-term impacts from global climate change”.
Carbon Brief 4th Nov 2019 read more »