A few years ago, the Sierra Club sent us a nice little map of the United States of America.
It’s pretty. All of the areas at or below sea level are colored a deep, dark green.
The country is going to shrink up nicely.
Now, the accepted projections are that the sea levels will rise by 2 to 6 feet by 2100. That is a 0.8 to 2 meter rise.
Oh, except for one little thing. A complete melt of the Greenland Ice Sheet could push the rise to 7 meters (23 feet). Uh oh.
I just looked at the 2012 report that the State of California did on what climate change is going to do to them. The good news is that at least they are thinking about it. The bad news is that they’ve only been able to conceive of sea level rise to 1.4 meters. One point four meters is bad enough…….that will take out bridges, tunnels, and pretty much all of the industry and people and wildlife along the coastlines. Seven meters? San Francisco is fucked. So are all of the other major coastal cities.
The other noteworthy piece of news is that the Atlantic coast will suffer earlier than the Pacific coast.
A 7 meter rise means that we can kiss pretty much all of Florida goodbye. New Orleans – gone. Houston – gone (and good riddance to it). Manhattan, Boston, D.C., Baltimore – gone, gone, gone. On the bright side, property is Richmond, VA will be Oceanside and thus more valuable.
‘Course, none of that is gonna happen in the next couple of years, so no worries.
Oh, except for the little nugget that 36 states will have water shortages in 2013. It’s possible that Lake Mead water levels could slip so low that Hoover Dam stops generating electricity.
Populations continue to grow though, on shrinking land bases, and drought conditions will continue to put large scale agriculture at risk. So feeding all of those crowded people is gonna be a problem.
Hunger Games, anyone?
But hey, we can’t change our lifestyles, now can we? We still gotta water our lawns, fuel our cars, fight wars, fly around the globe, mine minerals, pollute the ever shrinking groundwater supply, kill the honeybees so that we can have our gizmos. Industrial civilization must be fed!
Meanwhile, the Obomney Clown Show is in full swing. Gaffes! Outrage! Finger pointing!
All sound and fury, signifying nothing.