HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Environment & Energy » Environment & Energy (Group) » Adapting to a warmer worl...

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 01:10 PM

Adapting to a warmer world: No going back

Adapting to a warmer world: No going back
With nations doing little to slow climate change, many people are ramping up plans to adapt to the inevitable.

Olive Heffernan
28 November 2012

When Superstorm Sandy hit the US coast last month, it blew millions of New Yorkers back into the nineteenth century. The southern part of Manhattan went black after floodwaters shorted out electrical systems. With the subway system disabled, many residents resorted to traversing the island by foot, and water supplies in some areas became contaminated with bacteria and pollutants.

The largest Atlantic hurricane on record, Sandy wreaked US$50 billion in economic losses along the US northeast coast, providing a costly reminder of how ill-prepared even the richest nations are for weather extremes. Some recent weather disasters have now been attributed, at least in part, to human activity, including the 2003 European heatwave and the floods in England in 2000. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), storms, floods and droughts will strike more frequently and with greater strength as the climate warms. And if nations are struggling to cope now, how will they manage in a warmer, harsher future?

Just a decade ago, 'adaptation' was something of a dirty word in the climate arena — an insinuation that nations could continue with business as usual and deal with the mess later. But greenhouse-gas emissions are increasing at an unprecedented rate and countries have failed to negotiate a successor to the Kyoto Protocol climate treaty. That stark reality has forced climate researchers and policy-makers to explore ways to weather some of the inevitable changes.

“As progress to reduce emissions has slowed in most countries, there has been a turn towards adaptation,” says Jon Barnett, a political geographer at the University of Melbourne in Australia.


5 replies, 1082 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 5 replies Author Time Post
Reply Adapting to a warmer world: No going back (Original post)
OKIsItJustMe Dec 2012 OP
kestrel91316 Dec 2012 #1
tama Dec 2012 #3
happyslug Dec 2012 #4
Nihil Dec 2012 #5
tama Dec 2012 #2

Response to OKIsItJustMe (Original post)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 01:29 PM

1. Time to prohibit all construction within 50 yards of all coastlines. Let the beaches and dunes

function as nature intended them. Restore our coastal wetlands. Stop spending scarce resources to rebuild where it makes no long-term sense.

Hell, make it 100 yards.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to kestrel91316 (Reply #1)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 01:43 PM

3. Vertical challenge


Hanging fiscal cliffs on cliffhangers still OK.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to kestrel91316 (Reply #1)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 05:22 PM

4. No the rule has to be tougher, 20 feet elevation

On the West Coast that may just mean a few feet given that the Continental Plate is going westward and thus being LIFTED above the Pacific Plate so that the coast line goes through very swift elevation change.

On the other hand, the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts are the product of the Atlantic SPREADING and pushing North America and Europe apart. As a result you can go MILES before you rise 15 to 20 feet in elevation (Especially in Florida).

I use 20 feet, for that is what the sea level can increase when ever the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) does collapse (it can be lower). WAIS has been "unstable" for the last 10,000 years and the increase level of warm water hitting it has made it more so. Some spring, March through early April, it will Collapse and world wide sea levels will increase about 20 feet world wide in amount a month (Depending on how long the effective of the increase in displaced water not only takes place BUT spread from the West Antarctic).


From last Spring:

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Response to happyslug (Reply #4)

Tue Dec 4, 2012, 05:43 AM

5. Exactly - original ground elevation(*) is the important criteria here.

And it should be enforced by a blanket ban on rebuilding any destroyed houses/offices/hotels/whatever
(regardless of how long the previous version was there).

There should also be the same criteria for buildings in flood plains.

(*) = "ground" elevation to stop some smart-arse from trying to put a hotel on stilts on a barrier island,
"original" to stop them from destroying the next island in order to ship additional sand across before
the survey to allow planning permission.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread