Glacial melt water added to sea level rise calculations

A new study says that melting mountain glaciers around the world will cause the oceans to rise about 12 centimeters by 2100. That’s about 4.7 inches.

The study explains some disparities in the measurement of sea level rise. Part of the increase could not be attributed to any specific reason.

The work was done by Valentina Radic of the University of British Columbia and Regine Hock of the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Professor Hock specializes in mountain glaciers and ice caps.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimated that from 1964 to 1970 there was a 1.7-millimeter rise in the sea levels, about .067 of an inch. About a millimeter was explainable.

The researchers article in Nature Geoscience seeks to add the anticipated melting of glaciers to estimates of the increases in the level of the world’s oceans

Coastal residents of Costa Rica could face total sea level increase of between 75 and 190 centimeters by 2100, according to one study by European researchers. But that study may not have taken glacial melt fully into account.

Converted to the U.S. measurement system, the rise would be between 29.5 and 74.8 inches. That would inundate much of the existing beach properties, at least those held in concessions in maritimes zones and drastically alter the country’s geography. The spit that holds Puntarenas centro would vanish under water. The higher levels also would make even more land vulnerable to storm surges of the type that some Pacific coast residents now face because their properties are too close to the sea.

Helsinki University of Technology and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research reported the study jointly in 2009. The paper was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.

The new report suggests that the increase would be somewhat higher.

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