Bengal Island succumbs to global warming nonsense – AP gets nutty over the loss of a sandbar

By Steven Goddard and Anthony Watts

New Moore Island in the Sunderbans has been completely submerged.
New Moore Island in the Sunderbans has been completely submerged. Photo - Das/AP

From the New York Daily News via  Associated Press reports :

Global warming resolves 30-year land dispute between India, Bangladesh: Coveted island sinks

By NIRMALA GEORGE, Associated Press Writer Nirmala George, Associated Press Writer – Wed Mar 24, 9:29 am ET

NEW DELHI – For nearly 30 years, India and Bangladesh have argued over control of a tiny rock island in the Bay of Bengal. Now rising sea levels have resolved the dispute for them: the island’s gone.

New Moore Island in the Sunderbans has been completely submerged, said oceanographer Sugata Hazra, a professor at Jadavpur University in Calcutta. Its disappearance has been confirmed by satellite imagery and sea patrols, he said. “What these two countries could not achieve from years of talking, has been resolved by global warming,” said Hazra.

Note in the map below that the island was a river estuary, meaning it wasn’t made out of rock as claimed.  It was made out of mud and sand.  From Wikipedia:

The island was situated only two kilometers from the mouth of the Hariabhanga River. The emergence of the island was first discovered by an American satellite in 1974 that showed the island to have an area of 2,500 sq meters (27,000 sq ft). Later, various remote sensing surveys showed that the island had expanded gradually to an area of about 10,000 sq meters (110,000 sq ft) at low tide, including a number of ordinarily submerged shoals. The highest elevation of the island had never exceeded two meters above sea level. [1]

The island was claimed by both Bangladesh and India, although neither country established any permanent settlement there because of the island’s geographical instability. India had reportedly hoisted the Indian flag on South Talpatti in 1981 and established a temporary base of Border Security Forces (BSF) on the island, regularly visiting with naval gunships. [3][4]

South Talpatti Island.jpg

Wikipedia Map

The AP claim (probably from Seth Borenstein) is that global warming induced sea level rise has submerged the island, and that is complete nonsense.

Let’s look at sea level trends in the region. Here’s the NOAA Tides and Currents map of the area from their interactive web site.

NOAA’s nearest tide gauge shows sea level rising in that region at 0.54 mm / year, which means that would take nearly 2000 years for sea level to rise one meter. See the plot below:

Note that since the island was first discovered in 1974, the sea level graph above shows 19.4 mm (0.76 inches) rise based on a rate of 0.54mm/year.

Sea level rise is a relative phenomenon.  It can be caused by sea rising, or land sinking.  Sort of like sitting on a train at the station, and you can’t tell if your train has started moving or the adjacent one.

Looking at a satellite image of the Bangladesh delta, one can see how tides, currents, silts, and other factors shape what is a tenuous boundary between land and sea:

Temporary estuary islands and sandbars appear and disappear all the time worldwide. Sometimes it can take a few years, sometimes a few centuries. Note that most of the area near South Talpatti  Island is only 1-3 meters above sea level anyway, which means that such low lying islands made of mud and sand are prone to the whims of tide and currents and weather.
click for larger image - Source: Global warming art

Low lying islands are modified by nature on a regular basis. For example we have Chandeleur Lighthouse in Louisiana

From USGS:

The lighthouse was situated on land until Hurricane Georges (September 28, 1998). After that the island had eroded from under the lighthouse such that the lighthouse appeared to be in open water. Since Georges, although the island had reformed behind the lighthouse, the lighthouse remained in open water. The pre-Ivan photo (August 11, 2004) shows the lighthouse in open water about 30 m from the shoreline, and the northern tip of the island was relatively broad and extended several hundred meters north of the lighthouse.

It was probably the cumulative effect of four hurricanes in 7 years that resulted in the deep erosion (evidenced by lack of shoaling) seen now after Hurricane Ivan.

And looking further back in time, islands have disappeared before: from the Sarasota Herald – May 29, 1937

While we are on the subject of islands disappearing into the Indian Ocean, even more interesting is the 2002 discovery nearby of a 9,000 year old city, submerged 36 metres off the coast of India.


Excavated Harrapan remains  (Picture: North Park University)

The city is believed to predate the Harappan civilisation

Lost city ‘could rewrite history’

By BBC News Online’s Tom Housden

The remains of what has been described as a huge lost city may force historians and archaeologists to radically reconsider their view of ancient human history.

Marine scientists say archaeological remains discovered 36 metres (120 feet) underwater in the Gulf of Cambay off the western coast of India could be over 9,000 years old.

The vast city – which is five miles long and two miles wide – is believed to predate the oldest known remains in the subcontinent by more than 5,000 years.


How many Hummers were they driving 9,000 years ago?  Chalk up another clueless AGW claim.  Sea level rises and/or land subsides, estuary flows change, and sandbars appear and disappear. In this case of a tiny sandbar/island near the Bangladesh delta, it  has nothing to do with global warming.

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March 25, 2010 12:46 am

It’s funny how this sea level rise eats small uninhabitated islands first. As if to warn us. Tomorrow it could come back and take the UK. Or NZ. Or Madagascar. But today, only New Moore Island.
Hmmm, maybe it would have made better news if they had called the island “Ancient Moore Island”.

Peter Melia
March 25, 2010 12:50 am

Why should we take note of a NOAA tide-gauge history in North Eastern India, which indicates a tiny sea level rise, when they completely ignore a tide-gauge in Tasmania which has no increase at all for the last 150 years?

Gary Hladik
March 25, 2010 12:59 am

(sigh) Next Toyota will blame their current woes on global warming.

Ian Cooper
March 25, 2010 1:18 am

They should re-name it “No Moore Island.”
Sand bars and other such temporary river estuary features come and go as a result of both river flooding and storm surges. Along our coast is the remains of a ship called the Hydrabad which was blown onto our coast in 1878. Even as recently as the 1960’s (when I was a kid) people could dive off the wreck into reasonably deep water at high tide. Visiting the site today one finds the wreck mostly buried in sand above the high tide mark.
Sand dunes are living geological features. Some of the largest stretches of moving sand dunes in the southern hemisphere are along the Manawatu/Horowhnua coast line on the southern west coast of the North Island in New Zealand. If sea levels were rising at the rates claimed by those people then one would expect the Hydrabad to be surrounded by water. This is not happening. Our land mass is slowly increasing. The coast has many dozens of Km’s to go to get back to where it was during the last ice age but it is still heading outwards, and not back to the mountains as the scaremongers would have people believe.
OT, a week ago (March 18th) we experienced the coldest summer air temperature in the past 55 years (as far as the data I have goes back). The 0.5 degrees C was 0.2 lower than the Feb 22nd 2003 that previously held that record. There are NO other days apart from those two, for our southern summer ( Dec solstice to March equinox) that get below 2 degrees C in the summers from 1954-55 to now. The -3.6 degree C grass minimum and ensuing frost is some 6 to 8 weeks early by normal standards. An interesting cold season is in the offing, if this little rogue wave is anything to go by. 2003 was interesting here. A huge polar blast with heavy snow to low levels at the start of July, then virtually nothing! Only time will tell.

March 25, 2010 1:19 am

Sand bah humbug !

Thon Brocket
March 25, 2010 1:30 am

Two other factors are at work here. It’s likely that the Ganges Delta, like any large delta, is being isostatically depressed by the weight of deposited sediment, contributing an unequivocally non-AGW-related component to sea-level changes; and the sediments themselves will settle and consolidate as water is squeezed out and the long process of lithification into shales and mudstones begins. I have no idea what the magnitudes of these two components might be, but it seems an interesting field of inquiry.
Another problem, which is usually misreported by enviro-journalists, is over-abstraction of fresh ground-water, which in areas close to the sea “floats” as a “lens” above salt water. Over-pump it (usually for irrigation) and the salt water comes up the well-head, accompanied by AP hacks shrieking “Global warmening! The sea is rising! We’re all going to die!”.
And of course there is increased flooding due to deforestation in the Ganges-Brahmaputra catchment.
Lots of enviro-bother in the Sundarbans, true enough. None of it down to global warming, though.

March 25, 2010 1:30 am

I would appear to be slightly worse than just sloppy reporting. Here’s an article that seems to claim a paper by Hazra in 2002, claimed that 2.2 mm of the claimed p/a change was due to natural subsidence.

Bruce of Newcastle
March 25, 2010 1:31 am

Deltas sink. Why else are they fishing statues out of the harbour at Alexandria? Maybe ancient Egyptian statues are a sign of CAGW, everything else seems to be.

March 25, 2010 1:32 am

Should read “It would” not “I would”, pesky early mornings.

Arizona CJ
March 25, 2010 1:37 am

Could someone please explain how, even *IF* global warming was real and was causing sea level rise, how the effects could be local and not global?? Water does tend to run downhill, so absent any change in land elevation, a sea level rise would be global.
Unless, of course, one of the predicted effects of global warming is localized changes in the force of gravity? 🙂

Mike McMillan
March 25, 2010 1:44 am

Good job digging up the back story. My compliments to the staff.

March 25, 2010 1:52 am

Bengal Bay sea level change:

Martin Brumby
March 25, 2010 1:59 am

It is only a matter of time before some troll drags in the Carteret Islands, so I may as well pitch in and get my revenge in first.
Google “Carteret Islands” and you will get yards of AGW shroudwaving from all the usual suspects. Monbiot / Grauniad, BBC / Daily Mail / Oxfam …
However, even Wikipedia has to point out that the land is sinking and why:-

March 25, 2010 2:07 am

The AP fails basic science once again it seems. Sandbars and barrier Islands come and go on the whim of the wind and surf. There is a classic example of this right near where I live: The Ocean City Inlet.
Prior to 1933 the barrier island that the city of Ocean City sat on was the same island as Assateague. In 1933 a Hurricane came along and cut a wide path through the island to the Assawoman bay.

The resort is built on the southern end of Fenwick Island, one of the chain of barrier islands stretching from New York to Florida. Ocean City Inlet, which connects the quiet backwater bay with the Atlantic Ocean at the southern end of the island, was opened during the great hurricane of 1933, by storm-surge overwash from the bay side. To maintain the inlet as a navigation channel, two stone jetties were constructed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers shortly after the storm. The jetties have stabilized the inlet, but they have drastically altered the sand-transport processes near the inlet. The net longshore drift at Ocean City is southerly; it has produced a wide beach at Ocean City north of the jetty, but Assateague Island, south of the inlet, has been starved of sediment. The result is a westerly offset of more than 500 meters in the once-straight barrier island.
Can you imagine what the MSM would say today if something like that happened this summer?

March 25, 2010 2:09 am

The story, in it’s full alarmist glory, is carried currently in the Guardian. Interestingly, while it appears in the ‘Comment is Free’ section, there is no facility for commenting there.

Roger Knights
March 25, 2010 2:16 am

It’s notable that the “It’s Natural” points Steve & Anthony made — and there are more that could have been made* — were deliberately omitted from this AP New Moore Island story. This is a plain indication of bias — but since it was a sin of omission, I guess they figured no one would notice. It’s one more item in the scale to be weighed when the Day of Judgment arrives.
* E.g., by googling for: mangrove level

son of mulder
March 25, 2010 2:18 am

It’s probably been washed away by the deluge of Himalayan glacier water as 2035 fast approaches;>)

Alan the Brit
March 25, 2010 2:35 am

So, a lump of mud, silt, sand 50m x 50m (54yds x 54yds) sitting at the mouth of a huge delta, expands over 30 years or so to 100m x 100m at low tide, (108yds x 108yds), then gets washed away. Wow, never let reality get in the way of a sensational story! Never mind, give it a few years & it will turn up again, probably in a slightly different position! (Made by aliens I expect, I’m sure I read it in one of the Sunday papers so it just has to be true).

jim hogg
March 25, 2010 2:49 am

Has anyone found anything that reliably supports the existence of the underwater city in the Gulf of Cambay? Looks highly unlikely on the strength of the Wiki piece and the repeated recycling of the original very “watery” claims all over the net . . . . . And a sea level rise of 120 feet seems to go beyond anything postulated by Rhodes (Fairbridge Curve) Fairbridge et al. Might be something in it for descendants of Noah though.

March 25, 2010 2:51 am

I claim that dune quickly in the name of Her Majes….glug….glug…teeeee.

March 25, 2010 2:57 am

I love these stories. They are so utterly moronic only a complete suggestible moron could fall for this nonsense. It is like an April Fools joke played early to catch out the gullible and expose them.

March 25, 2010 3:12 am

Gary Hladik: “(sigh) Next Toyota will blame their current woes on global warming.”
Now you’re talking, forget global warming, this is serious stuff. I’ve just spent four days trying to replace a front headlamp on our latest Toyata. I couldn’t believe it, you needed screwdrivers, and a spanner, and even then the cover needed a crowbard to remove a cover.
Putting the headlamp cover back on required two strong people (one to pull back the windscreen washer filler funnel) and the other person to try to manoevre the cover into place.
Then the blasted thing snapped … so after reinforcing it with steel rods (screws) and alradh..??… glue, I finally got it back in place on evening number day four.
And the job would have been a lot more hassle, except we’d got the engine covers off because the headlamps fill up with water … something which they also knew about but didn’t do anything about!!
If they can’t even get changing a regular item like a headlamp right … something you should be able to do in the dark at the side of the road, if they seal their headlamps at the bottom and let the water in the top so they fill up like fishtanks, then this is the last time I’m buying a Toyota

March 25, 2010 3:13 am

We have as much as 50-60cm changes on Georgian Bay with thousands of Islands. Mostly rock in the area and they many minor Islands submurge to reappear after the melt and run off has raised the water levels tempererally.
I little unhabited sandbar?
Talk about sensationalism. And some people eat this garbage up.
Like governments that say look at this reference…it must be true.

March 25, 2010 3:15 am

It should be pointed out that this island only emerged fifty years ago-presumably formed from slt deposition. Silt islands come and go and no doubt another one is forming elsewhere i the estuary or the silt is accreting to the mainland somewhere.

March 25, 2010 3:50 am

Isn’t there some kind of medical treatment that could be prescribed for this? Electric shock therapy or something? Maybe a straight jacket?

March 25, 2010 3:51 am

Anyone who has had the pleasure of travelling or living in that area would not be the least bit surprised that this so-called island disappeared. Explains where all the water from the melting Himalayan glaciers went…

Steve in SC
March 25, 2010 3:53 am

I remember the New Jersey took some fire from an island off the coast of Vietnam. The New Jersey returned fire and sank the island. (literally!)

March 25, 2010 4:01 am

Cutting down 45% of the mangroves to aid the shrimp industry probably has more effect than either land sinkage or river flow.
Bangladesh: losing mangroves to shrimp farming leads to food loss and environmental insecurity

Chris Edwards
March 25, 2010 4:05 am

Its political, the island will re appear nearer one of the claimed parent coun tries!
I would say predicting sea levels is more complicated than climate, no one has plotted the bottom with any accuracy, the tectonic plate movement is erratic and fluctuations on magnetic flux change everything, nightmare to understand.
There is an island that was a sunken ship from the 1812 war with the USA in Canada, would they like to tie that in with AGW or unicorns?

March 25, 2010 4:07 am

I read a source that claimed the “island” was created in 1970 after a cyclone.
Yep, it’s a sand bar !!!!!!!

March 25, 2010 4:10 am

What the heck, here’s the souce:

March 25, 2010 4:16 am

If only Mother Nature could solve all our border disputes so peacefully.

March 25, 2010 4:24 am

So in a choice between a sand bar in a river being washed away or the sea, presumably very, very locally, having suddenly risen over six feet, alarmists want us to believe the latter. That about right?

March 25, 2010 4:26 am

The good news is that there’s no sandbar left to fight over.
The bad news is that the alamists will find sand where none exists to bury thier heads in.

March 25, 2010 4:30 am

If indeed the sea levels continue to rise, won’t we see corresponding flooding and deposition on the flood plains of Bangladesh thus maintaining the relative levels between sea level and flood plain? Surely some of that catastrophic glacial melting will transport a smidgen of dirt toward the sea thus creating some more rocky islands in the Sunderbans?

March 25, 2010 4:31 am

I’ll start worrying about sea levels when Kevin Costner starts growing gills.

March 25, 2010 4:38 am

There are other reasons for sea (ocean) levels rising or falling in a particular area of the globe. Indian Ocean has one of the largest negative ‘geoid anomalies’, which may well be reason for sea levels fluctuation.
This geoid anomaly may also be reason for the Maldives disappearing in the near future.

Allan M
March 25, 2010 4:53 am

The east coast of England is dissapearing too! The once major city port of Dunwich started to disappear due to the SUVs of the 13th century.

At its height Dunwich was one of the largest ports in Eastern England, with a population of around 3000, eight churches, five houses of religious orders, three chapels and two hospitals.

These must be the SUVs that caused the Medieval Warm Period.
Another case is Spurn Head in Yorkshire (Yorkshire is being eroded! Hooray!) The appearance and disappearance of Spurn Head is cyclical at ~250 years. They keep having to rebuild the road to the lighthouse even on the present version.

“Note the proximity of the farm to the cliffs, such buildings are frequently falling into the sea! The coast is eroding at between one and two metres per year and this erosion is intimately linked with the morphology of Spurn Point.”

I must accept the total blame for this, having driven my former camper van down to the end of the spur, causing sea level to rise.

March 25, 2010 5:13 am

Good job! Kudos! Set Borenstein should have done this for his readers – maybe he is not qualified enough or not committed to serve the best interest of his readers.

March 25, 2010 5:14 am

here’s some relevant reporting from the Sunderbans:

March 25, 2010 5:16 am

Just for the heck of it, I posted this comment on the Yahoo News site linked above:

WattsUpWithThat is having great fun with the AP’s naivete and agenda-mongering. Delta islands and sandbars come and go all the time (this one just appeared 50 years ago) with tides, sedimentation, storms, currents, etc., and tidal gauges show no sea-level rise. It has nothing to do with ‘global warming’. See here:

/Mr Lynn

March 25, 2010 5:25 am

Curiousgeorge (04:31:29) :
I’ll start worrying about sea levels when Kevin Costner starts growing gills.
I’ll start worrying when Kevin Costner makes another movie.

March 25, 2010 5:29 am

@Jim Hogg.
The city exists and photos have been taken. (As well as other samples.) The Indians are seeing a lot of resistance from the establishment because the city rewrites the history books. The current consensus is that civilisation arose in the fertile cresent of the Middle East and this city is a direct challenge to that.
By it’s depth, we can reasonably assume that the last Ice Age was still going when the city was founded, so a rise of 120 ft when going from a full glacial period to an interglacial isn’t out of the expected range. By it’s size, we can tell that it wasn’t somebodys first attempt at city building, they had had a lot of practice by the time the submerged city was founded. This pushes the beginnings of the founding civilisation further back into the glacial period.
Certain references in Vedic literature suggests that it was written during the last full Ice Age, which might imply a connection.
The bottom line is that should such a city exist, then it becomes likely that civilisation did not arise in the ME or Europe and spread from there, but was rather imported from a much older Indian civilisation. This concept is an affront to many in the establishment.

john ratcliffe
March 25, 2010 5:39 am

It is (or was)a sandbar in an estuary. Sandbars in estuaries appear and disappear as part of the natural evolution of the estuary.
The argument between estuary India and Bangladesh over sovereignty reminds me of a similar spat over a small island called Perejil (Parsley in English) between Spain and Morocco back in 2002. The island lies 250 metres of the coast of Morocco, and is claimed by Spain. A brief description of events is at
An amusing little episode.

March 25, 2010 5:44 am

@ JohnB (05:29:04) : So the sea level rise back then must have been caused by all those SUV’s ( Sport Utility Vimana’s ) 🙂

Fred from Canuckistan
March 25, 2010 5:44 am

A Rock for the Ages, done in by a meandering thalweg.
Pity. Geomorphology used to be an honest science.

Al Gore's Holy Hologram
March 25, 2010 5:45 am

There’s a tide-guage in Mumbai next to the Gateway of India monument which has been compared to its appearance in paintings from the Victorian era. No perceptible change from more than 150 years.

March 25, 2010 5:46 am

Are you sure this piece didn’t first appear in The National Enquirer?

March 25, 2010 5:48 am

Looking at the picture you start this piece with the one thing that strikes me is the trees are still there, which means the island is still there. It hasn’t been washed away or the trees would have floated off.
My guess is the photo was taken at a particularly high Spring Tide, possibly with a storm surge or melt surge added in and the story itself is just hokum and smoke.
Perhaps someone would like to look for it at low tide.

fred wisse
March 25, 2010 5:50 am

How about the islands and mountains that have been created in or near Iceland during the recent years ? Surely here the cause was global warming as well ! The sediments were overhotted and it just so happened that there were no adequate temperature recording-stations set up in the area to register the proof of this robust global warming . Anyway the heating here is undeniable .

March 25, 2010 5:50 am
March 25, 2010 5:53 am

This story has been doing the rounds all over the media over the last few days but it seems to actually originate from February. Professor Sugata Hazra could well be the alarmist at the centre of all the fuss, as suggested by this article I found from a journalist on the ground at the time.

March 25, 2010 5:58 am

Steve in SC (03:53:19) :
I remember the New Jersey took some fire from an island off the coast of Vietnam. The New Jersey returned fire and sank the island. (literally!)
It was more like picked it out of the water, made a large hole, then dropped it back.
Meanwhile, back on topic, the *state* of New Jersey’s famed sunny, sandy, surfy, boardwalk-rimmed shoreline is moving south at about six inches per year, all courtesy of wave action and the ocean currents. It would have entirely relocated and turned Delaware Bay into Delaware Lake by now if it hadn’t been for the Corps of Engineers.
Ummmm — and the annual winter storms which replace the sand on the beaches with sand from the shallows through
— *ahem* —
wave action and the ocean currents.
In the interest of full disclosure, I am not an oceanographer — but I’ve swallowed my share of wave-born sand.

March 25, 2010 6:01 am

I can only recommend the superentertaining lectures by Nils-Axel Mörner – an expert on sea levels – who is often showing many of these silly things that lead people to believe that the sea levels are quickly changing. He’s been to many of these places and found similar resolutions. Some of the “sea level rises” were really man-made. Locally. But they forgot to hide all the traces. 😉

March 25, 2010 6:05 am

The Independant’s suitably named reporter “Andrew Buncombe” has a further quote from Professor Hazra, as follows:
“It is definitely because of global warming,” said Professor Sugata Hazra of Jadavpur University in Kolkata. “The sea level has been rising at twice the previous rate in the years between 2002 and 2009. The sea level is rising in accordance with rising temperatures.”
bunkum: Definition, Synonyms from
“bunkum also buncombe n. Empty or insincere talk; claptrap.”

March 25, 2010 6:07 am

This sandbar is the equivalent of a holy relic for the AGW faithful and, the AGW promoters of course.

March 25, 2010 6:07 am

This from Sciencedaily: (Cloud cover proxies in Tree rings?)
Summers Were Wetter in the Middle Ages Than They Are Today
ScienceDaily (Mar. 25, 2010) — The severe epidemic of plague known as the “Black Death” caused the death of a third of the European population in the 14th century. It is probable that the climatic conditions of the time were a contributory factor towards the disaster. “The late Middle Ages were unique from the point of view of climate,” explains Dr Ulf Büntgen of the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research (WSL) in Birmensdorf, Switzerland. “Significantly, there were distinct phases in which summers were wetter than they are today.”
What exactly took place at the time can be reconstructed today by studying the annual growth rings of old oak trees. “Annual growth rings provide us with an accurate indication of summer droughts for each individual year, dating back to late medieval times,” adds Professor Dr Jan Esper of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. Together with colleagues at the universities of Bonn, Gießen, and Göttingen, Büntgen and Esser managed, with the aid of the information provided by tree growth rings, to identify for the first time the summer drought periods over extensive areas of Germany in the last 1000 years. Their results have been published in the leading specialist journal Quaternary Science Reviews.
Using dendrochronology, the researchers have been able to demonstrate, for example, that a ridge beam in an old timber-framed house in the city of Kassel must have come from a tree felled in 1439. In this technique, the pattern of annual growth rings is compared with those in already dated wood samples. “We can thus determine the exact age of every beam,” says Büntgen, describing the process. The ridge beam can also provide information on whether past summers in Kassel were wet or dry. “If a summer tended to be wet, the trees generally grew faster, thus resulting in wider growth rings,” Esper explains. However, the information available from one beam is not enough to allow reliable conclusions about the climate in Kassel in 1439 to be reached. A large number of wood samples are required.
For their survey the researchers analyzed 953 different pieces of oak. To obtain information on the more recent past, they took wood from living trees. They also took samples from wooden construction elements of old timber-framed houses, castles, and churches, thus roughly covering the period of the last 1000 years. All construction wood samples were obtained in the north of the German state of Hesse and the south of Lower Saxony, while the living wood came from the region of the Kellerwald-Edersee National Park. “Oak trees in this area are particularly sensitive to climate change,” states Büntgen, explaining why these sites were selected. The oldest wood sample used in this survey dates back to the year 996 A.D., a time when the Holy Roman Empire was just coming into being. A total of 135,000 individual growth rings were measured to obtain a detailed overview of the history of rainfall in Germany, covering major eras ranging from the optimal Medieval climate (warm and humid) through the Little Ice Age (dry and cold) to that of the Industrial Climate Change (dry and warm).
More summer rain between 1350 and 1370
The late Middle Ages were characterized by two distinct wet periods in Central Europe in the 13th and 14th centuries, separated by dry summer weather between 1300 and 1340. “The increase in summer rainfall between 1350 and 1370 is remarkable and occurred exactly at the time when the plague broke out and spread across the entire European continent,” Büntgen specifies. This was followed by a generally drier phase from the late 15th century to the early 18th century. More wet summers occured at the beginning and at the end of the 18th century, while a trend towards a drier climate has developed over the last 200 years.
“We think that our results will also be useful for historians, as it may possible to associate droughts with famines and perhaps even large-scale migration events,” is the view shared by the climate researchers Büntgen and Esper. The researchers hope that collaboration between the natural and social sciences in interdisciplinary research projects will, in future, provide more information on the links between climatic and social processes of change. They themselves will be continuing their research into the Medieval plague epidemic, the Black Death.

Leon Brozyna
March 25, 2010 6:14 am

There’s nothing quite so sweet as getting the rest of the story.
Read this piece of typical AP nonsense the other day and, without any further digging, thought it smelt of three day old fish. Just from the description of the island’s location, the “story” was weak. Don’t journalists have even a rudimentary knowledge of geographical features, such as river deltas? A good chunk of Bangladesh is delta, just begging to be flooded on a regular basis, with islands that come and go.

March 25, 2010 6:14 am

Good point, Thon (01:30:14), that’s precisely what I was thinking – just about every major river Delta in the world is located in a subsiding basin. That’s why the rivers flow there, of course. The weight of the sediments over time only serve to reinforce the subsidence. This is the underlying problem with the Mississippi delta where New Orlean is located, and I don’t doubt that the Ganges delta has the same problem. (which of course is only a “problem” when men get involved)
The land in these areas is sinking – the land has *always* been sinking, and it always *will* be sinking. The only way to counteract this is to allow the rivers to flood in the spring and let the sediments build back up – but that messes with human structures, so we generally don’t like that solution, either.

Peter Miller
March 25, 2010 6:16 am

The current UK government – hopefully soon to be assigned to the dustbin (trash can) of history – still believes in rising seas, as predicted by dodgy manipulation of data by official climate institutions:
On the subject of unfounded climate scares, my favourite remains the ‘acidification of the oceans’, which amongst other things, will supposedly wipe out all the coral reefs.
Question: how does a very weak acid H2CO3 attack CaCO3? Answer: it can’t.
Mankind produces around 26 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide annually – assuming all of it – which it isn’t – is absorbed by the 1.3 billion cubic kilometres of ocean, then you will find the carbon dioxide content of the ocean will rise by about one part per million every half century.
Very simply, the maths and science rarely matches the scare.

March 25, 2010 6:16 am

Another SUNKEN CITY, this time in the pacific ocean, 60 km. west from the peruvian port of Callao, found in 1961 by the Duke University:

Leon Brozyna
March 25, 2010 6:28 am

Here’s a silly question I forgot to add — will AP run a story if this island should one day suddenly and magically reappear?

Steve Goddard
March 25, 2010 6:30 am

“A lie told often enough becomes truth”
-Vladimir Lenin

Carl McIntosh
March 25, 2010 6:47 am

Temporary estuary islands and sandbars appear and disappear all the time worldwide. Sometimes it can take a few years, sometimes a few centuries.

Not only estuary islands and sandbars, but volcanic uprisings as well, such as Graham Bank in 1831, that was claimed by England, France, the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, etc. France and the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies almost came to blows over it … until it disappeared as quickly as it had appeared.

March 25, 2010 6:49 am

There is a 26 mile long barrier sandbar in front of the New Jersey coast called Long Beach Island. It used to be a nice place, but it has gotten all touristafied of late. The north end of the island is a township called Barnegat Light because of its lighthouse. The first street in the township is 3rd street. There used to be a first and second street once upon a time. They were washed away in a hurricane long before I was born. Indeed, in one of the hurricanes during the 1960s, the island was cut into five pieces. They have pumped sand back into those holes so its one island again. Building your house on a foundation of sand is indeed a hazardous way to do it. Now if Rockall were to go under water, that would be something else.

Allan M
March 25, 2010 6:52 am

johnnythelowery (06:07:49) :
But with the tree rings as proxies for rainfall we are in the same position as for temperature – too many variables. A ‘Heisenberg’ of tree ring studies would likely be complaining at this point. Then again, maybe correlation isn’t causation. Sounds wooly to me.

Henry chance
March 25, 2010 6:53 am

As a harbomaster on a man made lake and avid sailor for 40 years, I saw several islands dissappear. One in particular is about 3 foot under and many boaters run aground on it. It is called erosion. Several were covered with trees. Climate changes and always has. Shorelines and beaches are in constant change.
The warmongers are hunkered in urban bunkers and seem totally oblivious to geological and geographic change events.
There is a complete industry that does dredging. For the urban myth makers, dredging is due to erosion and depositional events. It is NOT due to the bottom of the waterway moving upward. Igt is not due necessarily to the top of the water moving downward,

jim hogg
March 25, 2010 6:58 am

Thanks for that. As a sceptic by choice, and probably natural inclination to a degree – damned genes – I always try to keep a weather eye open for the agendas at work, and your point is well taken about the possible resistance to the concept of such a city’s existence on the part of those who might have an interest in promoting all things deriving from the Abrahamic religions and their histories, and also perhaps a more powerful resistance – which you may have meant : that deriving from the “conventional” wisdom. The established position on anything tends to be hard to shift. The Fairbridge Curve thesis I mentioned earlier being a good example: ridiculed initially, only to become widely accepted within a couple of decades.
There is also of course the possibility of a diametrically opposed motive on the part of the individuals (and nation) who seek to persuade us that this “city” exists.
I’ve hunted for photographs and video footage but have only found suggestions that the waters are never clear enough to allow for the taking of pics or video footage. However in this day and age it shouldn’t be difficult to show representations of the sonar picture in 3D. I also thought that the alleged age of the city – 9000 years – might be just a little too late to fit with the advance of the sea following the last ice age. 12,000 years plus might be a better fit. But, of course I’m only speculating. I’ve read also that the alleged artefacts from the site have been strongly disputed, with some analysts suggesting a natural explanation for their existence or their positioning.
There is too much unjustified certainty throughout most, if not all, of the sciences imv, and I frequently find myself doubting claims on the net, even on WUWT, though I agree entirely with the dismissal of the Moore Island sensationalism.

March 25, 2010 7:06 am

I suggest whoever wrote the AP article visit the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The Outer Banks are formed by the gulf stream current and winds. It is a large sandbar. Highway 4 runs through the Outer Banks and sometimes, the ocean waves wash over the highway. A common sight is to see sand being cleared off the highway. Cape Hatteras lighthouse had to be moved because of the shifting sands. After one of the many hurricanes that hit the Outer Banks, it cut Hatteras Island in half. Highway 4 has a bridge named the Bonner Bridge over what is called Oregon Inlet. Because of the shifting sands, Bonner Bridge is in deplorable shape. It is ranked a 2 out of a scale of 10 for bridge quality.
Sand is always shifting. I remember seeing islands around Cape Lookout lighthouse that are no longer there today and there are other islands there that didn’t exist when I went there as a kid. When I was a kid, we used to camp in front of the lighthouse, back when it was still owned by the Coast Guard and not the National Park Service. That was living rough. But I remember well how much the water changed from year to year. Just study the Outer Banks to learn how much sand can shift.

nandheeswaran jothi
March 25, 2010 7:10 am

This report about the disappearing island because of AGW is ridiculous. “Islands” come and go in any estuary. A good size cyclone makes so many sandbars ( underwater and above-water ). If the flow of river waters have been diverted in any sizeable way in that area, the cyclone-made sandbar becomes an island. in other cases, existing islands disappear. it is a constant.

March 25, 2010 7:17 am

“Chalk up another clueless AGW claim.”
This isn’t the first time Gorbalists have tried to sell disappearing Sundarban islands as the victims of global warming. Back in December 2006, the same esteemed climate witch doctor, Sugata Hazra, tried to sell global warming with the loss of Lohachara island at the mouth of the Hooghly River, which is about 70 miles to the west:
I’m kind of surprised, though, that Hazra is still relying on his MS in Global Warming to sell his malarkey and doesn’t realize he now needs a PHD in Climate Change.
Should there be future Sundarban island victims in the future, there is a nice, gridded and indexed, 1955 US Army map collection of most of the India for reference here:
(Have to H/T Tim Blair where I first read about Lohachara:

March 25, 2010 7:34 am

The new Chicken Little, Seth Borenstein, has done it again. This ridiculous misinformation story clogged up my Yahoo news page yesterday.
I can hear Dr. Mörner laughing all the way from Sweden.
Norfolk, VA, USA
[Yeah yeah I know we have the highest “rise” rate on the East Coast of the USA…..but that has more to do with aquifer depletion, land use, sitting on the edge of a mile-deep 35 million-year old meteor impact crater, and isostatic rebound of land to our north from glacial suppression in the last IA…not to mention thermal expansion of the Atlantic due to the warm AMO].

March 25, 2010 7:39 am

While these claims (island loss due to sea level rise due to global warming) are patently absurd to us, our political leaders believe every word because it bolsters their convictions and provides more cover for Cap and Tax. The warmists see nothing illogical in their plan to destroy western economies to save a sand bar.

Gary Pearse
March 25, 2010 7:40 am

Since the predicted perennial summers have turned to snow, evermore increasing cyclones have turned to water spouts, droughts and fires from Australia, California and even the Amazon have been drowned out by rain, doomed glaciers and arctic ice are reloading…. sea-level has become a bit of a straw to grasp onto and like grasping onto a straw in deep water, one does such foolishness in desperation.
I have suggested before that we enveigle a sedimentologist to do a post on the phenomena and dynamics of sedimentation in rivers, lakes, deltas, coastlines-beaches, etc. to head-off this AGW flight to the sea. It is a very interesting subject for all. My knowledge of sedimentology unfortunately is that of the average geologist but I have put forward a few bits and pieces on deltas – how they form, how they sink, how they rise to the occasion of sea-level rise and erode during sea-level declines – the fact that the Mississippi delta grew 120m in height after the end of the last ice age to keep pace with the rising sea level – Bangladesh’s deltas and everyone elses have done the same thing. Anyone out there that would care to contribute to a broader education on this delightful subject?

Bill Sticker
March 25, 2010 7:42 am

Why do people expect natural things to remain in stasis where not a grain of sand shifts? Is it more to do with their fear of change?

March 25, 2010 7:46 am

Just wait. This will show up in the next IPCC update. “Proof that sea levels are rising. Never mind that sea levels have only risen 20mm, that 2000mm high island just got eaten up by global warming.”

Pamela Gray
March 25, 2010 7:47 am

I, for one, applaud ANY AND ALL changes in water-forced land and shore changes. Creates new fishing holes.

David S
March 25, 2010 8:09 am

These stories are actually good for skeptics. They are easily debunked and make the warmers look like morons.

March 25, 2010 8:20 am

Earlier this month our district newspaper carried an alarmist main headline of how a firm of consulting engineers have been engaged to sort out beachfront property threats occasioned by “sea level rise attributable to global warming”. In my childhood and youth we lived right on the beachfront, not far from my present house. In my young days, circa 1945, I spent endless hours on the beach and rocks. I knew the rocks like the back of my hand. But these days this weary body doesn’t often call me to the beach. The article lead me to visit the beach at the next low spring tide. This I duly did, and the rocks I photographed looked exactly like the low spring tide rocks I so loved 60 years ago. Well, some enterprising consultancy will be receive a barrow-load of cash to reward it for its sterling efforts!
Geoff Alder

Steve Oregon
March 25, 2010 8:22 am

Lunacy and fabrication has declared that Oregon is already losing part of it’s coast to AGW sea rise.
You can’t drive to it and look at it but it’s there somewhere. Sure it is.
It’s hard to stress adequately how vast Oregon’s institutionalized AGW campaign has become.
Every single government. academia and environmental group, at every level, has contributed to an enormous campaign unequalled anywhere.
NOAA’s Jane Lubchenco spent years contributing to the Oregon propoganda machine and it’s the model she has adopted in her new position.
“land on the central and northern Oregon coast is being submerged by rising sea level”,
Our region is warming, average annual precipitation has increased, land on the central and northern Oregon coast is being submerged by rising sea level, and snow pack has declined precipitously. A 2004 Scientific Consensus Statement indicates these trends will continue:
Global warming solutions
OEC believes Oregon can demonstrate climate leadership by taking the steps necessary to curb global warming pollution and adopt solutions that will stimulate state growth in a new energy economy.
Why We Care
Oregon is already feeling the impacts of global climate change.
Impacts of Global Warming on Oregon
The Science Is Clear
Global warming puts our health, economy, and environment at serious risk and Oregon is already feeling the effects.
Environmental Impacts
Rising Temperatures
By 2100, the average temperature will rise 3 to 10˚ across the Northwest. (1)
Constrained Water Supplies
The University of Oregon estimates that snowpack may fall 75% from baseline by 2040, and another 75% from 2040 to an insignificant amount by 2080. (2)
Increased Wildfire, Storms and Flooding
Longer fire seasons are likely to significantly increase the amount of vegetation consumed by fire.
The incidence of storms and flooding is also predicted to increase.
Vulnerability of Local Species
Salmon and other coldwater species will suffer from additional stresses.
Even more stress may come from invasive species and refugees that come to the Basin from areas with larger climactic problems.
Rising Sea-Levels and Increased Erosion
Health Impacts
Oregonians will see an increase in unhealthy air days, as hotter summertime temperatures generate more smog. A longer pollen season will make life more uncomfortable for people with asthma and allergies.
Demands for emergency services are also likely to increase due to dramatic weather events, and rising summer temperatures will likely increase the incidence and intensity of heat-related illnesses and vector-born diseases like Lyme disease and West Nile Virus.
Economic Impacts
The economic consequences of global warming cannot be ignored. Agriculture will face increased competition for available water supplies, and higher temperatures are likely to reduce the viability of fruit crops.
Manufacturing, retail, and service sectors are likely to experience higher fuel and electrical costs due to reduced summer output from the BPA hydro system, disruption in supply chains and the distribution of goods due to increased dramatic weather events and workplace health concerns.
Impacts on Agriculture
Oregon agriculture will be significantly impacted by global warming. Agriculture is arguably more closely linked to the climate than any other industry. Global warming’s effects on agriculture will include reduced water supply, changed growing seasons and conditions that may require different crops, and increased crop pests and diseases.

March 25, 2010 8:25 am

Here in Charleston SC we have great fun trying to hold back the sea…

March 25, 2010 8:27 am

‘The remains of what has been described as a huge lost city may force historians and archaeologists to radically reconsider their view of ancient human history.’
BBC in all its glory.
BBC must be the organization in living memory that seem to believe that the world geography of today is what the world of yesterday looked like too. Like nothing have changed for twelve thousand years.
Where did all the water go during the ice age?
Where does people usually situate themselves?
And since the ice didn’t melt all at once during one terrible night, but some for a flood now and again. Actually there’s still plenty of ice left over that has yet to melt. Anyway where would you look for ancient civilizations that used to be by the sea, or the river mouth, nine thousand years ago?

March 25, 2010 8:33 am

Speaking of Louisiana, I remember seeing a documentary about the problems of subsidence there. Most of the state is above water only because of erosion in the Mississippi watershed depositing all that silt in the delta. Over time, the course of the river has wandered back and forth, building up land levels in some areas as they slowly fall in others that aren’t receiving new deposits.
With the flood control projects further upstream reducing the silt levels, and the levees that constrain the river to remain in its current channel, there is no longer any new dirt being laid down, so the ground is slowly sinking into the Gulf of Mexico. Hurricanes that a few decades ago would have only flooded coastal areas now cover a far wider range.
If one didn’t know that most of LA is literally sinking, the wider flooding would be evidence of sea level rise.

Jeff Alberts
March 25, 2010 8:51 am

Mike Haseler (03:12:47) :

Why are completely OT posts like that let through?

Steve Goddard
March 25, 2010 8:52 am

A lot of subsidence along the US Gulf Coast is due to pumping water and oil out of the ground.

March 25, 2010 9:01 am

Wait a minute, if New Moore island appeared 50 years ago and got bigger, doesn’t that mean that that sea level dropped. Sounds like a case of hide the (sea level) decline.

Jim Steele
March 25, 2010 9:14 am

.54mm + or minus .52 ???? Mean no trend. If they look at the trend since 1955 the sea level is falling! It’s all about the starting point.

March 25, 2010 9:16 am

The claims from global warming WERE real during the 80´s and 90´s up to the 97-98 El Nino; from then on, as we all know, temperatures began to fall down. During those warmer years andean glaciers did subside.
During SH summer it usually rains/snows over the Andes mountains (rains at middle altitudes, snow at higher). About 21 hrs. ago there was a big snow storm on the highest sector of the central highway in Peru, about 100 km.east from Lima city, so things are back to normal.:
However, local global warmers, blame it to “Climate Change”. Yes!, climate has changed as it usually does. So andean glaciers are growing and healthy.

Graham Jay
March 25, 2010 9:24 am

Searching for “Moore Island, Bay of Bengal” in Google Earth, South Talpatti Island is indicated and there’s a lighter blue area corresponding, but there’s no sign of anything above water. The Image is dated as Dec 2002. Might just be Google Earth’s poor resolution in the area.

March 25, 2010 9:51 am

@Steveta_uk (06:05:17) : re bunkum/buncombe
Fine catch sir. It does make one wonder if Mr. Buncombe has picked a pseudonym that his editors/publishers at the Independent are in on. If not intentional then the irony is truly astounding.

March 25, 2010 9:55 am

This is a typical AGW alarmist new report:
It fails under the most cursory review of the facts.

March 25, 2010 9:57 am

So we have an island smaller than Tom Friedman’s house, smaller than a sandbar in a river that might move a dozen times a century, that wasn’t known to exist until 1974, and its disappearance is caused by ‘global warming’.

The OtherDan
March 25, 2010 9:58 am

Mike Haseler (03:12:47) :
If they can’t even get changing a regular item like a headlamp right … something you should be able to do in the dark at the side of the road, if they seal their headlamps at the bottom and let the water in the top so they fill up like fishtanks, then this is the last time I’m buying a Toyota”
I must be missing something. I replaced headlights in my 2006 Corolla in about 2 minutes, no tools needed.

March 25, 2010 9:59 am

Letter to Seth Borenstein:
Seth, you are making a fool of yourselves. No wonder the AGW Crowd is loosing support.
You, as a journalist is looking for Authority , and reports what the authorithy tells you.
This is why you loose;
You have selected the IPCC as your authority. And the IPCC has an unscientific Object Paragraph. The IPCC reports scary stories from model-runs. They dont believe in looking at the data from the real world. They believe in models scenarios with almost random output.
When is it gonna sink in?
Now, regarding Seal-Level, why dont you ask Scientists, real Scientists, that use data from the real world?
I know why. Because they are deniers.
Regarding Sea-Level, I suggest you ask one of the greatest expert on real data from the real world.
Until you do that, you are bound to present bullshit from models. With Forcing factors to match temperature curves from CRU. Which is suspect by lack of raw data and suspected station manipulation.
It will be the “Revenge of Science” as Gavin Schmidt put it. A revenge over those who believed they could model a system with unlinear multi- variables with coupled feedback loops and chaotic elements.
And present scary stories from the outputs. Forever.
More and more people understands where the scary stories comes from, and you loose credibility. So its not us doing a good PR campain. Its you, shooting yourself in the foot.
Again and again.

Larry Geiger
March 25, 2010 9:59 am

I’ve looked, but I can’t find the article (which I think was on this site a while back) about South Carolina sinking into the Atlantic (ooops, I mean getting flooded by rising oceans:-)). Anyway, after a very cursory search (Google) I found several articles explaining very clearly the reasons for the sinking land (ooops, I mean rising oceans). The locals know the reasons why and they’re working to change some of them (again, pumping out fresh water, building canals and ditches, etc).
I live in Florida. Sand shifts. That’s why it’s called shifting sand! Sand comes and goes with the wind and the waves. Each year we spend millions (billions?) to put it back where it belongs:-) We know how to do it so perhaps we could send some consultants from the Corps of Engineers over there to help them. Maybe the Bangladeshis should get some dredges and dump trucks and put the sand BACK WHERE IT BELONGS!! Good grief.

Wondering Aloud
March 25, 2010 10:00 am

We have recently lost many islands around here due to climate change. It happens every spring.

March 25, 2010 10:10 am

The sky is falling, the sky is falling…
Oh wait, the land is sinking, the land is sinking…
It’s a frikkin’ sandbar. They come and go on a regular basis due to a number of factors. In the case of New Moore “Island” it could have been cyclone Aila that caused massive erosion.
There were one or two other cyclones in the Bay of Bengal last year so any one of those or erosion compounded by all of them probably wiped it out.
Yep, I’m a “denier”, a denier of BS that is. ;)~

March 25, 2010 10:18 am

A lot of subsidence in Louisiana is due to flood control along the lower Mississippi River, as it no longer goes where it wants to go and is channeled to dump sediment further out the Mississippi delta. Things that are built and sustained by river flooding need the river to flood. When it doesn’t, the sea does what it always does, win the war with new, unstable land. Take a look at the Atchafalaya Basin.

Colorado Skeptic
March 25, 2010 10:25 am

27,000 square feet, aren’t big box stores like Costco 30,000 square feet? Even tripling in size, the area concerned includes a Costco, the parking lot, and associated landscaping….1) two countries attempting to claim a chunk of mud this size, insane. 2) the outrage associated with the disappearance of an area of mud this size, insane.

Jim Ogden
March 25, 2010 10:29 am

This page from 2006 says that the island was actually growing:
And it’s quite possible that the island was wiped out last year by Cyclone Aila. That would be fitting because it is believed to have been formed by a cyclone.

March 25, 2010 10:34 am

They should have listened to my Mother, she said “If you two can’t play nice together with your things, I’m going to take them away and neither one of you will have them!”

March 25, 2010 11:04 am

jim hogg (06:58:00) :
yes, archaeology/anthropology is also very heavily politicized
especially in regards to Indian history

Roger Knights
March 25, 2010 11:04 am

Ron House (05:50:59) :
See my take on this story at:

Good link.

March 25, 2010 12:15 pm

@ colorado skeptic

27,000 square feet, aren’t big box stores like Costco 30,000 square feet? Even tripling in size, the area concerned includes a Costco, the parking lot, and associated landscaping….

That’s a good comparison of area with something most Americans are familiar with. Your numbers are a bit off though.

Later, various remote sensing surveys showed that the island had expanded gradually to an area of about 10,000 sq meters (110,000 sq ft) at low tide, including a number of ordinarily submerged shoals.

So how big is 110,000 sq ft?
From WikiAnswers:

According to Costco Investor Relations, Costo stores range from 73,000 square feet to 205,000 square feet, with an average of 142,000 square feet per store.

The average Walmart store is approximately 97,000 square feet, while Walmart’s larger stores, referred to as Super Centers, carries a square footage of approximately 186,000.

Including space for parking can easily double the area taken up by those stores.
So basically an average big-box retail store plus parking lot are at least twice the size of Isle No Moore.
New Moore Island is now Isle No Moore. LOL

March 25, 2010 12:18 pm

Fred from Canuckistan (05:44:47) :
A Rock for the Ages, done in by a meandering thalweg.
Pity. Geomorphology used to be an honest science.

I doubt you’d find many geologists who’d buy into the rising sea level story. Nor geologists who buy into AGW in the first place. We’ve seen too many climate changes in the geologic record to buy into this little bump being human-caused.
Geomorphology was my major area of study for my geology degree. Its’ a wonderful combination of science and interpretative skills that allow one to see how landforms change over time and space, but it’s still all based on the science. Can’t get a karst landform over sandstone, you know.

March 25, 2010 12:30 pm

Larry Geiger (09:59:05) :
I’ve looked, but I can’t find the article (which I think was on this site a while back) about South Carolina sinking into the Atlantic (ooops, I mean getting flooded by rising oceans:-)). Anyway, after a very cursory search (Google) I found several articles explaining very clearly the reasons for the sinking land (ooops, I mean rising oceans). The locals know the reasons why and they’re working to change some of them (again, pumping out fresh water, building canals and ditches, etc).
I live in Florida. Sand shifts. That’s why it’s called shifting sand! Sand comes and goes with the wind and the waves. Each year we spend millions (billions?) to put it back where it belongs:-) We know how to do it so perhaps we could send some consultants from the Corps of Engineers over there to help them. Maybe the Bangladeshis should get some dredges and dump trucks and put the sand BACK WHERE IT BELONGS!! Good grief.

And that’s exactly what the Army Corp of Engineers also do every so often to Folly Beach just south of Charleston SC. They dredge up the sand about a mile off-shore and dump it back on the beach. They have a lot of experience in doing so.
Rather silly, and expensive, but I’m not complaining because it is quite a nice spot. I wouldn’t blame them, though for not doing it anymore because it is, well, silly and expensive.
I do live quite low (about 9 feet above sea level) but cannot see rising oceans as a threat. The flooding threat comes from erosion and natural phenomena such as hurricane storm surge which has a nasty habit of changing the landscape where land meets sea (I also don’t see an increase in hurricane activity).

March 25, 2010 12:53 pm

AP = all propaganda

Steve Dallas
March 25, 2010 1:49 pm

Ha! Buy a Subaru! Took me 5 minutes and a screwdriver to slide a clamp off. You access the bulbs from under the hood. Subaru does have all that annoying eco crap marketing, but they make great cars.
Now you’re talking, forget global warming, this is serious stuff. I’ve just spent four days trying to replace a front headlamp on our latest Toyata. I couldn’t believe it, you needed screwdrivers, and a spanner, and even then the cover needed a crowbard to remove a cover.

Steve Dallas
March 25, 2010 1:54 pm

Read a book many years ago by a fellow who questioned the established archaeology of India because of these underwater cities he was diving too, some many miles off the coast of India. Of course he was treated like our Mr. Watts is by the Climatology establishment. He wasn’t rewriting the history himself, simply trying to get the old boys to possibly look at the suject again. He was a little bit off into left field, but brought up a lot of interesting points, many of which were debunked, other which are yet to be debunked. Anyway fun stuff. As a cartographer I was always intrigued by a few maps which showed Antarctica WAY before anyone had ever got close to it (ca. 16th Century), another issue he brings up.

March 25, 2010 2:13 pm

and I discovered that my castles stand
upon pillars of salt pillars of sand

March 25, 2010 4:31 pm

The Times website was carrying this on its front page earlier, complete with the picture of the submerged trees. Now, thanks perhaps to a number of comments pulling the story to shreds, it’s not even listed in the Environment section. You have to use the search facility to find it anywhere 🙂

March 25, 2010 6:24 pm

Christopher Columbus (Cristobal Colón, in Spanish) departed in 1492 from Puerto de Palos in southern Spain with three small sail ships called “carabelas”. If you fly with Google Earth to these coordinates: (or type in the “fly to” box: “Puerto de Palos, Spain”
37º 12′ 40.10″ N — 6º 55′ 44.72″ W,
you can see pictures of replicas of these ‘carabelas’ in the Port.
But you will also see that the port from where Columbus set to sea is now about 5 km away, east of the Atlantic. It seems that either the sea level went down or the terrain went up. New land was formed by sedimentary deposits carried by two rivers flowing there, and a and a long tongue of new land makes the way to the sea about 9 km long.

Pete H
March 25, 2010 7:43 pm

I love it when this sort of thing comes up and someone (in this case, Sugata Hazra, a professor at Jadavpur Uny), makes an obviously spurious claim.
I then call up good old Google and search for a link between the said “expert” and Pachauri and invariably get something like…
(Hint, scroll down to the Indian members) Wonder if Patchy has got a grant for Hazra at any point in time? May be worth searching for!

March 25, 2010 10:48 pm

What a surprise! Another sea level rise poster child is located on a river delta. The island ’emerged’ in 1974. What do you want to bet that 1974 was a flood year? Or, did sea level drop at that time due to global cooling?

Steve Goddard
March 26, 2010 12:06 am

Keith (16:31:15) :
Did you notice that a lot of the Times comments were taken almost word for word from this article? WUWT has many direct and indirect effects across the Internet.

Mike Dugas
March 26, 2010 2:04 am

Islands, if you can really call this an island, that form at the mouths of deltas emptying in the sea come and go all the time. Silt and mud deposits are brought in and out by storms and seasonal monsoons. To say this is global warming is just political punditry and NOT science.

March 26, 2010 2:51 am

Once there was Old Winchelsea!!
Not any more.
“The history of Winchelsea
Old Winchelsea drowned (1233-1287)
The success of Old Winchelsea was shattered by the start, in 1233, of a prolonged period of exceptionally turbulent weather (climate change?)* that lasted until 1288. A long series of severe storms accelerated the eastward longshore drift of shingle in the Channel and started to break up the shingle bank on which Old Winchelsea was built. It is ironic that it was these same forces that had created the shingle bank in the first place. From 1244, Winchelsea was receiving regular grants towards its sea defences and the reclamation of the Walland Marsh ceased.”
*I contend that 55 years of bad weather would indeed constitute climate change and that this is solid evidence that the Medieval Warm Period 950-1250 AD had then tragically become the Little Ice Age.
More at

March 26, 2010 3:12 am

Yep, this totally disproves global warming. /s You people have the logic and reasoning abilities of four year olds.
Reply: Approved for entertainment value, but refrain from any direct attacks on Mark, please limit any comments to discussing the piercing logic and content of his observations. ~ ctm

Crispin in Waterloo
March 26, 2010 3:48 am

RE: The request for info on the Indian city under water. You may not like the sources 🙂 but there are many such under water cities and at least one fat book detailing them by Graham Hancock called “Underworlds”, ISBN 0-141-00017-1.
As for a mechanism that can sink cities that deep in short order, the first three chapters of the otherwise somewhat speculative book, “Atlantis of the West: The Case For Britain’s Drowned Megalithic Civilization” by Paul Dunbavin describes in detail how a very small change in axial tilt can produce sea level changes of a couple of hundred metres rather suddenly. It is a fascinating read and worth the price of the whole book. Sea level changes are maximised at 45 Deg Lat, roughly 300 m per 1/2 degree tilt change. Small changes can be induced by a high latitude comet strike or perhaps other (Earthly) internal mechanisms/slips/changes such as irregular ice cap melt. Dunbavin examines the Irish sea and surrounds and I believe Dogger Bank went under in the same way.
Collisions induce a wobble one of which can still be detected 5000 years later. Apparently there are stone field fences in Wales running into the water and they continue across the floor of the Irish sea. That suggests inundation rather than a gradual rise. The Earth is an oblate sphere with a lot of water sloshing around, ‘flung out’ by the daily rotation. Tiny % changes in tilt because of changes in the centre of mass produce surprisingly large changes in sea level at 45 degrees Lat because water is free to move around. The math and motions are in the first chapters. For example the core has a slightly different axis from the mantle etc.
Underwater cities seem (roughly) to be in places where the sea level change is maximised by these events. One thing is for sure: monotonic sea level rise may be true globally on average, but certainly not regionally (is that the right word?) at any given point.
Fairbridge found multiple East Auz rises and falls of up to 2 metres within 20 years over the past 8000 years. Doesn’t seem unusual.

Atomic Hairdryer
March 26, 2010 4:27 am

If only we’d had global warming in the 12th Century UK, the press would have had a field day with this one as well:
“Dunwich was the capital of East Anglia 1500 years ago and was a prosperous seaport and centre of the wool trade”
But then storm surges and erosion demonstrated than no matter how many churches you build, nature wins. Which is a shame, because had it survived it may have become the home of CRU. Now it just has a rather fine chip shop and a nice inn for quiet weekends. I’ve dived there, but combination of silt and visibility means there’s not much to see. I was also disappointed as a child to learn it wasn’t Lovecraft’s Dunwich.

March 26, 2010 5:29 am

Slightly OT but bear with me …
Re: Mike Haseler on replacing headlight bulbs.
It’s not just Toyota that offers such challenges. Just about any car designed since the early 90s seems to have similar constraints. Tail light clusters can be just as bad. Some worse.
And that is just an indication of a more global problem. Design and application decisions are made based on different criteria to those applied 3 or 4 decades ago. Indeed laws are written, Health and Safety being one of the more visible (no pun intended) on the basis that people are incapable of doing anything for themselves. Once that is the case then there is no need for designers to make it possible for people to do things for themselves …. and business loves the idea of charging tens of dollars for the job of changing a sub ten dollar bulb.
I don’t know who set up the European Hi-Viz jacket scam but of they kept control of the rights they must be very rich by now. Flourescent yellow is the new black.
And so we are all conditioned to accept such developments for our benefit and lose the ability to consider things rationally – the lamp changing expert at the Toyota dealer will do that for us. So it is with everything else in life, and once we stop thinking about the need to know how stuff happens we will accept anything. Even the concept of AGW. Without a thought. Just as intended.
(BTW having battles with changing bulbs fromnt and rear on a small Itialian FIAT I discovered the trick was to remove the entire light assembly unit. Much easier then removing the battery which would then, potentially, necessitate electronics re-sets and stuff like that. The only up side is that in general automotive bulbs seem to last longer these days than they used to when they were easier to change. Perhaps the two things are connected.
There are rumours that certain cars of German design origin require for the front of the car to be dismantled before a bulb can be change. Strangely in parts of the EU is is still law, enforcable by on-the-spot roadside fines, to carry a spare set of bulbs in order to provide immediate rectification when a bulb blows. The two ideas seem mismatched don’t they? But then so do so many of the matters related to climate as discussed here, so we should not be surprised in either case since the complement each other in terms of social philosophical thinking.)

George E. Smith
March 26, 2010 2:09 pm

Totally unprecednted; land simply appearing, and disappearing in the Delta system of major rivers; who’d a thunk it ?
I bet you an an Amazin amount of land appears and disappears around the Amazon Delta too. I know we have that happen even in San Francisco bay, where a lot of land around the SFO airport has simply arisen out of nowhere; they’ve even built whole cities on previously non-existing land; Foster city for Example.
So around SF, the ocean levels are falling; probably enough to compensate for the ocean falling around Bangladesh.
I suggest that the Government of Bangladesh put up signs on the road; pointing in the direction of uphill, to show the people where to go, as the sea rises.

March 27, 2010 10:44 am

So NOAA has a tide gauge indicating 0.54 mm, not 0.53 or 0.52?
Gosh! Tide gauges with an accuracy of +_ 10 microns !!!!
NOAA is such a hoot!

March 27, 2010 5:23 pm

How does an island sink and yet , it’s mainlands shoreline doesn’t rise ? Maybe the media should of ‘PhotoShop’ed the satellite photos like Gore did .

Charles Sainte Claire
March 27, 2010 6:45 pm

In Mark Twains day a river pilot was invaluable on the Mississippi. Why? Because sand bars were constantly appearing, moving and disappearing.

March 28, 2010 12:23 pm

Pratchett. Jingo.

March 30, 2010 8:40 am


April 22, 2010 2:22 am

It’s not much of a rebuttal to use tidal measures ending in 1996 to “disprove” Hazra’s claim that sea level rise has increased in pace in the Bay of Bengal since 2000.

April 30, 2010 3:15 am

Writer Nirmala George doesn’t sound credible.

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