Wednesday, August 19, 2015

You Are Here - 5

Fig. 1 U.S gets the worst sea level rise (SLR)
The U.S. has, for years now, been devastated by natural disasters and economic impact as a result of the damage that has been done to The Global Climate System (The Damaged Global Climate System, 2, 3).

At 26:35 on one of the videos below, Professor Mitrovica points out that this reality we live in now is going to continue, because the U.S. is a focal point of Global Warming Induced Climate Change, specifically by sea level rise (SLR) now (cf. Fig. 1).

It will literally destroy, not merely damage, the part of global international trade conducted through U.S. and other sea ports (The 1% May Face The Wrath of Sea Level Rise First, Greenland & Antarctica Invade The United States, 2, 3; Why The Military Can't Defend Against The Invasion, Weekend Rebel Science Excursion - 44).

The American East Coast today, now, is a center of the high point of SLR, and will continue to be so (ibid, cf. Will This Float Your Boat - 10).

At an ecological conference considering those economic damage factors (which these climate change events are creating now, and have been creating for decades), it was pointed out by an "insurance specialist" (in the first video below).

The world renowned insurance company, Munich RE, sent Dr. Peter Hoeppe to explain how insurance company payouts now, due to climate change, have sky-rocketed.

He points out that these now accelerating payouts involve economic calamities that have been going on for "thirty years."

He closes the video presentation by explaining that current computer software models have habitually projected worsening conditions, however, they have also habitually underestimated the degree of those worsening conditions (A Paper From Hansen et al. Is Now Open For Discussion).

The fact is that SLR is a clear and present economic danger now, yesterday, and tomorrow:
"The surge that's scheduled to hit the American coastline Wednesday isn't coming from a hurricane, but it could still leave a feeling of helplessness in its wake.

Flood insurance rates are set to skyrocket when a new bill goes into effect on April 1. Known as the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 (HFIAA), it's going to drive the prices of flood insurance plans through the roof for residents of all U.S. coastlines.

How much could they increase? In some areas where flood maps show maximum risk, premiums that were previously $500 could be raised to as much as $20,000 a year or more, according to estimates released in 2013.

"My insurance is more than my mortgage," said Nancy Loft-Powers, a resident of Deerfield Beach, Florida, who told the Washington Post that her premium will be raised from the $7,500 she already pays annually. "I live by the beach in an old neighborhood. I pay [too much] insurance for a crap house that’s not great." (Flood Insurance Rates To Increase, emphasis added)

"McLaughlins’ flood insurance renewal came with a whopping rate hike of $21,000. McLaughlin said he’s convinced FEMA intentionally kept consumers and real estate and mortgage companies in the dark about the rate increases.

The astronomical increase also took McLaughlin’s mortgage holder by surprise. An oversight of this magnitude tends to expose lenders to more risk because homeowners likely can’t afford to pay for the new policies." ($24,000 Insurance Policy, emphasis added).

"Congress ordered a rate increase because the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency is $24 billion in debt. It reached that historic amount because revenue from the discounted premiums could not cover payments on flood claims, particularly after two devastating hurricanes, Katrina and Sandy, on the Gulf and Atlantic coasts.
Rising sea levels from climate change make coastal living even more dangerous, conservationists say. And the flood-insurance program that went into the red paying flood claims is deep in debt to a U.S. treasury funded by taxpayers, advocates say
." (Rising Waters, Flood Debt, emphasis added)
Go ahead and tell those people who are suffering an economic impact now, that they need to worry about their great, great, grandchildren when it comes to SLR and other climate change factors.

Tell them that they are only imagining this, because it is not an economic problem now.

But, they will know you are a clueless kook (Inhofe's One Man Troofiness Crusade), because they, unlike deniers, are in touch with the reality of where they are now (You Are Here).

Experts in the field of risk management would tell you the same thing:
The sea-level rise scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) do not necessarily provide the right information for high-risk coastal decision-making and management, according to new research involving scientists from the Global Climate Forum in Berlin.

A commentary, published today in the journal Nature Climate Change, warns that the IPCC scenarios are often inappropriate or incomplete for the management of high-risk coastal areas as they exclude the potential for extreme sea-level rises. This missing information is also crucial for a number of policy processes, such as discussions by G7 countries to establish climate insurance policies and allocations of adaptation funding by the Green Climate Funds.

“Although the IPCC scenarios are a big step forward in understanding how the climate system works, these scenarios are not designed from the perspective of coastal risk management and, unfortunately, this is not spelled out clearly both within and beyond the IPCC reports,” says lead author Dr Jochen Hinkel from the Global Climate Forum. Dr Hinkel is also Lead Author of the coastal chapter of the Working Group 2 contribution to the latest IPCC report.

The IPCC sea-level rise scenarios are developed for the purpose of understanding the physics of the earth system through so called process-based models, which are models based on the laws of physics. As a consequence, these scenarios cover only the central range of possible sea-level rise. For example, the scenarios of IPCC Fifth Assessment Report estimate that by 2100 global mean sea-level is likely to rise by 0.28–0.98m relative to 1986–2005. The probability of staying within this range is, however, estimated to be only at least 66 per cent.
“Consider, for example, the situation of London,” explains Dr Hinkel, “which is protected against coastal floods through the Thames Estuary Barrier. There was concern that rapid sea-level rise would not allow sufficient time to upgrade or replace the Thames Estuary Barrier because such large engineering tasks require 25–30 years for planning and implementation.” For such a situation, the IPCC scenario range is not the right piece of information, because there is a 0–33 per cent probability of sea-level rise lying outside of this range. Such a high residual risk is not tolerable from the perspective of protecting major cities from sea-level rise. These situations require high-end scenarios in order to make sure that there are options available that can be realised even in the worst case to come.

Co-author Professor Carlo Jaeger from the Beijing Normal University says: “Ongoing work on projecting the central range of sea-level rise should be complemented with the development of high-end scenarios for different time horizons that correspond to different real-world coastal management decisions.

Such scenarios should also consider all the information on future sea levels including semi-empirical models, physical constraints on ice-sheet dynamics and paleo-records of sea-level change, because coastal high-risk management requires an analysis of decisions against all available knowledge, including all uncertainties and also ambiguities amongst expert opinions and their distinct approaches,” says Dr Hinkel.
(Global Climate Forum, emphasis added, cf. this PDF). Those "paleo-records of sea-level change" mentioned in the quote contain records of abrupt SLR.

Such as a "1m sea level rise in a few years or less" in America only several thousand years ago (The Surge: A Forgotten Aspect of Sea Level Rise, quoting NASA GISS).

This is a very serious economic problem now, not just for the millions who have homes and other buildings on the sea coast which are being damaged now, or to those whose economic safety is endangered by a $24,000 a year flood insurance policy.

Economic impact is growing at an exponential rate as billions of dollars are being spent now by federal, state, county, and municipal sea port authorities and other infrastructure regulators and risk managers.

Those officials are hiring architectural and construction companies to present plans to cope with the now, and with the future (New Climate Catastrophe Policy: Triage - 12).

The problem they feel now, and will face continually into the future, has recently been exacerbated by the addition of SLF understanding to the sea level change (SLC) phenomenon.

Trillions upon trillions of dollars, euros, yuans, marks, rubles, pesos, and other currencies have been, are now, and will continue to be, spent by port authorities to contemplate, design, remodel, reconstruct, and/or relocate sea ports.

That is, once they figure out if their particular sea port is going to suffer from the now ongoing SLF or the now ongoing SLR form of SLC (Peak Sea Level - 2).

The East Coast of America, now, has the highest SLR, and has had it for years.

Yes, America is number one in SLR  today, and will continue to have it that way (Social Dementia Causes Heated Misunderestimations - 2, Will This Float Your Boat - 3, Agnotology: The Surge - 16, and see Professor Mitrovica in the second video below).

Read these too (miscellaneous sea port problems foreseen by somewhat aware people):
"On a humid March day, trucks laden with goods bump through pools of seawater on roads to the sinking Dutch-era port." (Indonesia)

"More than 130 port cities around the world are at increasing risk from severe storm-surge flooding, damage from high storm winds, rising and warming global seas and local land subsidence." (130 Port Cities)

"In a survey posed to port authorities around the world, the Stanford team found that most officials are unsure how best to protect their facilities from rising sea levels ..." (Seaports need a plan)

"For example, if relative sea levels rise 4 feet, 72 percent of ports in the region will be at least partially inundated." (EPA Says, p.3)

"Port Perceptions of Sea Level Rise ... Seaport managers concerned and under informed" (Stanford Ocean Council says ...)

"Ports have a special need to look ahead, assess their risks and begin adapting to climate change. With truly massive fixed infrastructure, large port facilities worldwide are starting to pay particular attention to the new outlook that sea level rise has only just started. With a useful life of a half century or longer for their assets, it is very relevant to start planning ahead for the new reality. " (Seaport Magazine, Englander says ...)

"Using a mid-range scenario for future sea level rise, we find that, by 2030, more than half of the 52 communities we analyzed on the East and Gulf Coasts can expect to average more than two dozen tidal floods per year. Importantly, the rise in the frequency of tidal flooding represents an extremely steep increase for many of these communities. In the next 15 years alone, two-thirds of these communities could see a tripling or more in the number of high-tide floods each year. The mid-Atlantic coast is expected to see some of the greatest increases in flood frequency. Because many communities are already coping with tidal floods, a tripling in their frequency means that, by 2030, such floods could occur more than once a week." (Union of Concerned Scientists, see third video below).
The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here

Prof. Dr. Peter Hoeppe:

Prof. Dr. Jerry Mitrovica:


  1. The number of companies with the incredible expertise needed to deal with this problem must be small.

    Bidding war anyone?

  2. Bwah-hah-haaaaaaa! Good one Randy - like non-existent!

    It's only fitting that the most warmongering, resource using, fossil fuel guzzling, IDIOTIC nation on the planet gets the brunt of it. Right now we're BURNIN'! Oh yeah and BAKIN' too! "

    "Aw, it's only natural (cough, choke, hack ...sputter) - nothing to worry about.
    i'm sure it'll be back to normal any year now . . . ."


  3. sum um else happ'nin' now

    Florida aquifer contamination continues as salt water intrusion moves inland

    Schematic drawing of saltwater intrusion. Sea level rise, water use, and rainfall all control the severity of the intrusion.


    The densely populated megalopolis of South Florida is losing it's water wells as sea water intrudes into the Biscayne Aquifer. Salt water has already moved 6 miles inland in Broward County and is likely to continue to creep westward. Ninety percent of South Florida gets its drinking water from underground supplies, most from the Biscayne aquifer. This inland movement observed in Broward County is due to urban withdrawals from the Biscayne Aquifer, ocean water moving sideways into the aquifer and seepage of saltwater from surface sources.


    1. Good find Tom !

      That state has a denier in the governor's office.