Life begins underwater. For evolutionists, the first life on Earth is believed to start somewhere from the ocean’s depth. This theory might be correct, but for sure – water covers more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, making the “Blue Planet” suitable to thrive and survive.
With its great power that comes in different forms, water has claimed almost four million people during the 1931 China floods, 300,000 deaths during 1881 Typhoon “Haiphong” in Dai Nam (now Vietnam), and 230,000 casualties in 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. However, these numbers are nothing compared to the threat of rising sea level, which scientists predict could cause tens to hundreds of millions of death and may cause major cities and low-lying islands to disappear forever.
In an article published by National Geographic (February 2019), there are three significant factors for the rising sea level: thermal expansion, melting of glaciers, and loss of Greenland and Antarctica’s ice sheets. All these factors are seen as a result of global warming and climate change. (click here for more details)
According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), global warming is the long-term heating of Earth’s climate system that has been observed since the pre-industrial era between 1850 and 1900. It is primarily caused by human activities such as fuel burning, leading to increased greenhouse gases trap in the atmosphere.
Since then, the Earth’s global average temperature has risen by about 1 degree Celsius and continue to increase by 0.2 degree Celsius per decade. Scientists observed that most of the current warming is with 95 percent probability due to human activities, and continue to increase rapidly since 1950. On the other hand, climate change is the average weather pattern that defines the Earth’s local, regional, and global climates because of human input and natural cause of warming.
Scientists believed that global warming is the main culprit of an ever-changing climate system, which is also the primary reason for the faster melting of ice caps and glaciers in the northern part of the globe. These ice caps and glaciers represent 69 percent of fresh water, covering almost 10 percent of the Earth’s landmass.
In 2015, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) revealed that the Earth’s oceans are rising faster than expected due to ice melting caused by global warming. The agency also projected that we are now “locked-in” to at least 90 cm of sea-level rise in the coming decades. This rise in sea level would be enough to displace millions of people on the planet. Moreover, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) states that if all polar ice caps and glaciers melt, the seas will rise about 230 feet (70 meters), enough to put the entire planet into chaos.
Furthermore, faster sea-level rise could have devastating effects on coastal habitats, destructive erosion, flooding, more dangerous hurricanes, and typhoons, and powerful storm surges. They can strip away everything in their path and putting millions of people living in vulnerable communities at risk, not to mention its economic, social, and public health implications.
New research shows that by 2050, rising sea levels will erase more cities. In an article published by The New York Times, new data from an accurate calculation of land elevation based on satellite readings predicted that some 150 million people that are now living on land would be below the high-tide line by mid-century. Most Asian countries and cities will be the first to disappear: Southern Vietnam and its capital city, Ho Chi Minh, Bangkok City in Thailand, Shanghai in China, Mumbai City in India, and Basra in Iraq. (click here for more details)
However, scientists believed that it would take 5,000 years or more to melt more than five million cubic miles of ice on Earth but, if we continue adding more greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, that would enough to heat things and create an ice-free planet. Of course, we don’t want to see that in our lifetime and experience living in doomsday. But, it is never too late to mitigate the effects of global warming. Let us support initiatives and do our part to preserve the only living planet, at least, for the next generations to come.