Global warming is a major concern which needs to be handled in a very effective manner by the governments and the citizens of the whole world otherwise it may create ample problems for the mankind which will make our lives very difficult.
While we always talk about the difficulties that we are facing because of the increasing temperature every year due to global warming, it is also impacting the sea-levels in an adverse manner.
As per a report, “Global Sea-Level Rise and Implications Key facts and figures” by World Meteorological Organisation, many countries especially China, India, Bangladesh and the Netherlands are at huge risk because of the rising sea-levels because they have large coastal population. Here are the major cities of the world which will be highly affected because of the rising sea-levels – New York, Bangkok, Jakarta, Mumbai, Maputo, Lagos, Cairo, London, Santiago, Los Angeles, Buenos Aires, Shanghai, Copenhagen and Dhaka.
The report says that there has been a rise of 4.5 mm in the global mean sea level in the period ranging from 2013 to 2022 and it can easily be said that human activities have been the main reason behind this trend, at least from the year 1971.
In this report, WMO has specified that between 1901 and 2018, the global mean sea level has increased by 0.20 m and even if somehow the global heating is kept under 1.5 degrees Celsius, still sea-level will increase at a good pace. The report further says that if the temperature rises by 2 degree Celsius then the sea-level rise would double and with further increase in temperature, there would be exponential increase in sea-level which clearly implies that whatever the scenario may be, the countries with long coastal line such as India, China, the Netherlands and Bangladesh are at high risk.
The report reads that during the period ranging from 1971 to 2018, the reason behind 50 percent of sea level rise was thermal expansion, 22 percent was because of ice loss from glaciers, 8 percent was due to changes in the process of land-water storage and ice-sheet loss was behind the 20 percent sea-level rise.
As per the report from WMO, the effects of sea-level rise will be huge and compounding and it will result in loss of coastal ecosystem , flooding, groundwater salinization and destruction of coastal infrastructure which will affect the livelihood, health, food and cultural values of a big population.
The experts are of the opinion that India is already facing problems because of global sea-level rise and they will intensify further in future. In terms of surface warming, Indian Ocean is the fastest warming ocean and cyclones are developing rapidly because of heat and moisture due to the warming of the ocean. There is an increase in flooding and cyclones are also coming with more and more rain with each passing decade.
In 2021, the Ministry of Earth Sciences stated in Lok Sabha that on an average, the sea-level along the Indian coast has risen by 1.7 mm per year during the period of 100 years (1900-2000).
The impact on India will be huge as a big population lives in the river basins of Himalayas, the melting in Himalayas is already bringing floods in Pakistan and as these glaciers will melt in future, many regions in India will also become inhabitable.
Difficult days ahead, what do you have to say in this regard?