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So raising the sea wall another 5-7 meters would be no big problem?  How high are they now?  6C is not an unreasonable average ambient increase, given the collective ability of our species to respond to what are perceived as distant threats.  I understand that 6C is what we can expect unless current actual trends are significantly altered, and these trends have not yet really begun to be altered, especially outside of Europe.

Even if we reach 6C there is no certainty as to how long it will take for the ice cap to melt.  But there is also no certainty that the ice cap will not have already melted by then.  And then large scale ice melt from Greenland could conceivably alter the deep saline current and the Gulf Stream.  This could cause ice sheets to begin accumulating in northern Europe.  It might slow down the melting of Greenland, but it would hardly be an advantage to northern Europe.

There is only really one way to verify if the models are accurate and we don't want to go there.  To me the prudent thing is to assume a worst case and work to avoid it.  At worst we will have given people employment doing things that turned out not to have been necessary, but the world as we know it will have survived substantially.  But that is not how finance operates and, as we know, finance runs the world.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Sep 8th, 2009 at 07:18:57 PM EST
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is an absolutely massive amount of temperature increase in geological perspective. Just saying. We'll need to go back far, far back to a time where we think the earth was that warm. From the top of head, probably into the Paleocene.

6C is a convenient number to quote, but establishing a figure on climate sensitivity has been and still is the holy grail of climate science, and it's not settled. I'm agnostic on what it will be. To me, the number matters more for establishing proper adaptation gaols, than that it acts as a stimulus for switching to a non-carbon society.

Right now, the IPCC projection of sea level rise until 2100 range from a few cms to 1 meter - a figure which has been corroborated by younger studies. However, current sea level rise will have to accelerate a lot to find itself in the higher end of that bracket. Even so, in the medium long term (decades to 1 century), the Netherlands has little to worry.

by Nomad on Wed Sep 9th, 2009 at 04:14:28 AM EST
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No serious scientist I know of has talked about anything worse than 2 metres in 100 years. And that is if the global warming stuff is actually correct and peak oil/gas/coal isn't real.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Wed Sep 9th, 2009 at 12:38:04 PM EST
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