USGS plays the ‘100 year threat’ game with sea level rise

From the “not a verifiable forecast” department, and the “auxiliary department of funding acquisition worry” comes this headline from USGS today. Some other 100 year headlines follow.

Study Shows Sea Level Rise to Threaten West Coast Tidal Wetlands Over the Next 100 Years

 U.S. Geological Survey technician collects elevation data using a real time kinematic GPS at Bandon National Wildlife Refuge. Location: Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge, OR, USA Date Taken: 8/27/2012 Photographer: Katherine Powelson

U.S. Geological Survey technician collects elevation data using a real time kinematic GPS at Bandon National Wildlife Refuge. Location: Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge, OR, USA Date Taken: 8/27/2012 Photographer: Katherine Powelson

CORVALLIS, Oregon – The U.S. Geological Survey and Oregon State University released a report this week examining Pacific Northwest tidal wetland vulnerability to sea level rise. Scientists found that, while vulnerability varies from marsh to marsh, most wetlands would likely be resilient to rising sea levels over the next 50-70 years. Beyond that time, however, most wetlands might convert to intertidal mudflats as sea level rise outpaces the capacity of tidal marshes to adapt.

“This study provides critical scientific findings to help natural resource managers develop and implement conservation and adaptation actions as the coastal areas of Oregon and Washington prepare for rising sea levels,” said the Department of the Interior’s Northwest Climate Science Center director, Gustavo Bisbal. “Delivering robust science with practical management application is of focal significance to our science program.”

Coastal wetlands provide economic and recreational benefits to local communities by creating critical habitat for important local fisheries. They also support a wealth of ecosystem services such as water purification and flood protection. Until now, the vulnerability of these critical habitats to rising sea levels had been poorly understood, leaving resource managers with little information for coastal adaptation planning or strategies.

“This information is timely and at the scale needed to help coastal resource managers plan for climate change,” said USGS project lead, Karen Thorne. “One clear result is that wetlands are more vulnerable to sea level rise in areas with higher human impacts to the local ecosystems.”

The research aims to inform tidal marsh management of vulnerabilities along Washington and Oregon coasts and is part of a larger effort to examine tidal marshes from Washington down to the border with Mexico. Scientists took a thorough snapshot of current conditions at nine tidal marshes, measuring elevation and current range of low and high tides, and mapping plant life and current and historic rates of sedimentation. The group then used models of sea level rise to calculate vulnerability for each marsh, testing whether vulnerability varies from north to south or among wetlands. Two coastal National Wildlife Refuges, Grays Harbor and Willapa Bay in Washington, appear to have the most resilience, persisting as low marsh for at least the next 100 years. But sea level rise will eventually outpace marsh growth and drown most high and mid-marsh habitats by 2110.

The study was a partnership of the USGS, Oregon State University and the University of California, Los Angeles. The work was supported by the DOI Northwest Climate Science Center, which is managed by the USGS National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center. The center is one of eight that provides scientific information to help natural resource managers respond effectively to climate change.

The final report is available online. Additional project information can be found at the USGS Western Ecological Research Center.


USGS provides science for a changing world. Visit USGS.gov, and follow us on Twitter @USGS and our other social media channels.
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Links and contacts within this release are valid at the time of publication.

###
Since they’ve listed 100 year threats, I thought I  might list some other similar century scale threats that might come true, but are equally unverifiable today
  • Over the next 100 years, we might see a devastating asteroid impact on Earth.
  • Over the next 100 years, wind and solar power might replace every other electricity source.
  • Over the next 100 years, only the elite will be able to afford electricity.
  • Over the next 100 years, rising temperatures on Earth will make it uninhabitable, and we’ll have to flee to another planet.
  • Over the next 100 years, the Arctic ice cap will be gone, oh wait, that was last year.
  • Over the next 100 years, Michael Mann might become a hero to the world for warning us about global warming by beating it into our heads with a stick.
  • Over the next 100 years, former IPCC chairman Rajenda Pacharuri’s record might be expunged to make it look like (in Mark Steyn’s words) he’s not a “sex fiend”.
  • Over the next 100 years, we might finally get those flying cars we’ve been promised.
  • Over the next 100 years, everyone reading this will likely be dead.
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131 thoughts on “USGS plays the ‘100 year threat’ game with sea level rise

  1. Seems to me that sea level rise is just what is needed to increase tidal wetlands.

    So what’s the big deal.

    ” Tidal ” wetlands have salt water incursion, that’s why they are tidal. The critters that inhabit them are used to it rising and falling twice a day.

    Another 3 mm per year is not going to disturb their habits.

    g

      • My sons do not appear to care how fast it grows. You should emulate them (but, then, I’m not married to you. I do not give the same advice to my husband.)

    • “Beyond that time, however, most wetlands might convert to intertidal mudflats …”

      Intertidal mudflats are more diverse and more productive..than wetlands.
      ..of course, they fail to mention that as the intertidal mudflats move inland…so do the wetlands

      • Exactly…it’s pretty shameful when the USGS doesn’t accept what is normal geological variability. I would also like them to explain just why the present situation / coastline / temperature is perfect and must be preserved at any cost.

      • More wild claims and limited databases t support them. The USGS might do better to spend taxpayer money on keeping streamflow gaging stations in service to serve the public need for flood analyses and forecasts and drought analyses.

    • Many tidal wetlands along the west coast are bordered by man-made dikes. As sea levels rise the tidal wetlands will be pushed up against the dikes and, if sedimentation cannot keep up (one of the parameters the scientists are measuring), eventually disappear when the water gets too deep.

      • In Holland as part of the Delta Works they have actually managed to re-generate “tidal” wetlands INSIDE the storm structures. It is an amazing part of the project which is ongoing and has revitalized many species that would otherwise be killed by a straight diking system. A long time ago I was part of the project where we worked on preventing salt infiltration into the ground table to protect farm land in the west of Holland which at the time was a green house mecca for growing veggies but was threatened by the level of saline water at each flood stage of the tides in the Delta formed by the Rhine, Maas rivers.

      • Geologically, wetlands are temporary. They’ll either silt up or layers of plant life will fill it in. As peat bogs show, that can take a while. Of course, parts of the USGS know that.

  2. ########

    ‘Since they’ve listed 100 year threats, I thought I might list some other similar century scale threats that might come true, but are equally unverifiable today”

    ALL forecasts are unverifiable TODAY

    I predict the sun will come up on sunday
    that’s unverifiable TODAY

    • The important word here is “equally” not “today” which only is added to distinguish that these things might be verifiable on some other day.

    • Absurd Stephan. The point is clearly that a prediction that goes this far into the future will never be reconciled……at least not during the lifetime of those making it and likely be long forgotten by later generations that live at the time it was predicted for.

      This is the realm of climate science today.

      I’m an operational meteorologist. We forecast weather for up to 2 weeks on a regular basis and are held directly accountable for that forecast that corresponds to the initial 1 week(especially the first few days).

      Some meteorologists will make seasonal forecasts. This time frame is not expected to show as much skill, so the standards are much lower for accuracy as would be the standard for predicting this weeks weather………..however, Winter comes and goes quickly and there is a standard to judge the Winter forecasts made prior to that Winter by.

      What would be the standard to judge a 100 year forecast by?

      • ‘I’m an operational meteorologist. We forecast weather for up to 2 weeks on a regular basis and are held directly accountable for that forecast that corresponds to the initial 1 week(especially the first few days).”

        I use your crap. it sucks. but it is the best we have.

        A forecast that the sun will come up 100 years from now IS verifiable.
        VERIFIABLE means “has empirical content”. means it can be checked IN PRINCIPLE.

        forecasts of 100 year floods or 100 year sea level rises are verifiable IN PRINCIPLE, but in practice
        you actually have to wait 100 years to calculate the SKILL.

        with your two week forecasts I calculate skill daily.

        The problem is the time horizon. So, data for assessing skill is lacking ( there are ways around this )

        long time horizons are not a problem

        http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/risks/

        depending on the physics involved you just have more or less confidence

      • “The problem is the time horizon. So, data for assessing skill is lacking ( there are ways around this )”….

        really?

      • Mosher: 100 year floods have a 1% probability of occurring each and every year, You do not need to wait 100 years to verify this. You can have more than one 100 year flood in a given year. Look recurrence intervals.

      • Based on past predictions, and things no one predicted, I can confidently state that:

        – Worrying works: 97% of the things we are worried about will never happen.

        – Predictions are hard, especially about the future: No one will see the big technology shifts coming…they will happen and then people will look back and say “How ’bout that!”

        – Disasters will come and go. Just like always. The big ones will be more or less surprising, depending on how well one has examined the past.

        – Catastrophism will be alive and well and warning everyone that the end is nigh, and only those who repent will be saved.

        Blah blah blah.

      • “I use your crap. it sucks. but it is the best we have.”
        So I assume that your output matches…….

      • mosher says “I use your crap.”

        cant help but wonder what you use his crap for.
        planting crops? planning a parade? repairing a roof? speculating in commodities? (two week futures)
        crap makes good compost

      • Mike – What is a reasonable median score on two week forecasts of weather? No offense meant. I suggested to my kid that she do a rolling analysis of the temperature forecasts from our daily newspaper as a science fair project. You know, record the five day forecast high and low each day. One would expect the day ahead forecast to be more accurate than the five day forecast.

      • Except of course, for it’s motion though the Milky Way. (BTW, is that a dumb name for a galaxy, or what?)

      • I mean, they might as well call our local group of galaxies the fluffernutter cluster, or the solar system the Big Cheese Omelet.

      • Menicholas said: the Milky Way. (BTW, is that a dumb name for a galaxy, or what?).

        Actually, it might be the only appropriate name for a galaxy, since it is a near-translation of the same Greek word that we have borrowed as “galaxy”. How could an ancient Greek metaphor that has given us the category name possibly be inappropriate for the eponymous token that gave us the type?

    • Steven, that comment is based on verifiable historical observation. Since the sun has been observed to do just that every Sunday for billions of years. Not a good analogy.
      Try harder

      • … no response….

        We can make several judgments about someone uses an example to make an point, and they don’t understand the basic principles of the example.

    • The Newtonian physics-based model of the solar system has passed every single falsification test (prediction) it’s ever made. It is extremely well verified.

      Climate models have passed no falsification test. They have no known predictive power at all.

      Your equation of Newtonian and Hansenian models is false, Steve.

      • You see, the problem is that the “midnight” your forecast references does not happen “today”–thus cannot be verified/validated/falsified/you-name-it-ed until tomorrow. This is the trivial point made about when you get to match the prediction against reality. The non-trivial point about this trivial point is that there are conditions that are serially true, and predictably true (in a non-mathematical sense); the sun does not come up accidentally or providentially every morning; it comes up because it (and we and our part of the Universe) have been set into a context that will not, barring unforeseen events (that are increasingly less and less unforeseeable because of technology and stubbornness on our part), fail to continue suddenly and unexpectedly. This is not the same kind of forecast, of course, as that made on a chaotic, or at least stochastically variable, system.

        I.e., I think a prediction that the date will change at midnight can be made with 100% confidence, given what we know collectively about the current state of our neck of the woods, but nothing about the prediction can be checked against the reality it defines (“at midnight”) until that bit of reality arrives. The confidence judgment here is not at all outrageous, because the definitions of all terms force the prediction to be self-fulfilling; the same cannot in any way be said of decades-out climate predictions.

        On the other hand, ferdberple, you are quite right to call out “ALL forecasts….”, because that particular generalization is demonstrably false, but only because there are different flavors of forecasts.

    • But far more reliably predictable than disappearing coastal wetlands in a 100 years.

      I’m curious what model output was used – i.e. what rate of rise.

  3. Add these:
    Over the next 100 years, *some* life forms will learn to adapt to change rather than choose to become victims of it.
    Over the next 100 years humanity will conquer more land and convert more wilderness to gardens and homes.
    Over the next 100 years, we will continue to “…be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish (cultivate) the earth, and subdue (farm) it: and have dominion over (domesticate) the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

  4. The tide gauge record doesn’t agree with the predictions. West coast tide gauges show a decline in sea level rise over the last 60 years.

  5. As soon as you see the buzz word “robust” in government supported “science”, it is pointless to keep reading!

    • So, the coming “Godzilla El Nino,” as it has been named in the last 24 hours, is going to be a good thing? Gee, then why all the doom hype from the newsies? Wait, I know the answer. Sensationalism sells.

    • But but but according to John Kerry, climate is the biggest threat to mankind. Don’t tell me he is wrong?
      /s

      • If you want to If this AGW is BS does that mean ISIS is not a major threat to the USA? Surely not, what else could the government spend Billions of your $ on? To put it another way, how else could the government transfer your money to corporations? Is that too off-topic or just another example of the same pattern?

  6. USCG participation in specuscience doesn’t seem too harmful in this case, Certainly not when compared to the “futurist” wackos over at the pentagon that have infected everything including order of battle.

  7. “The group then used models of sea level rise to calculate vulnerability…” Oh, so they used “models”, did they? Would these be the same “models” that keep diverging more and more from reality, that never projected/predicted an 18 1/2-year and counting long Halt in the warming, nor can they explain it, and which have utterly failed in their attempts at accurately depicting what our climate has done or is now doing. Those models?

  8. Surely the wetland would just move inland a few dozen metres. They are commonly on stream deltas.

    • You’d think (unless you don’t think).

      Here in Oregon the entire region west of I5 — the coastal range — is scraped-off seafloor from the subduction of the Juan de Fuca plate. Yet somehow the tidal zone managed to go with the flow, so to speak.

      I find it amusing that those who shriek about the negatives of change, can’t seem to envision change.

      It’s worse than fixed thinking. It’s broken thinking.

  9. “The group then used models of sea level rise to calculate vulnerability for each marsh, testing whether vulnerability varies from north to south or among wetlands. ”

    Straw man argument set up since as long as they use a rising sea level model, at one point or another it will overcome land. It’s designed to do so. In fact the follwoing gets funnier:

    “Two coastal National Wildlife Refuges, Grays Harbor and Willapa Bay in Washington, appear to have the most resilience, persisting as low marsh for at least the next 100 years. But sea level rise will eventually outpace marsh growth and drown most high and mid-marsh habitats by 2110.”

    So they claim that these marshes will be OK for “at least” the next 100 years, that is “at least” in 2115 BUT sea level will overcome them by 2110! Can’t even proof read their press release…

    • They seem oblivious to the fact that sea level has fluctuated dramatically over long time scales, and yet there are marsh adapted creatures filling every niche, and many of these species have existed for millions and millions of years.
      I am becoming convinced that the new requirement to publish is a complete lack of awareness of Earth history.

  10. Looks like Oregon can now proceed to apply for Federal funds for its own bullet train, like CA did. It only takes an official false premise to get qualified.

  11. And I suppose the Ghost Forest wetlands somewhere down there are an exception. One dumb-arse M9.5 Cascadia Earthquake, and adaptation becomes a moot point. Sawgrass will survive.

    • Cholesterol used to cause heart attacks. Anyone who disagreed was in the pay of the plastic fat manufacturers.

      • High oil prices are here to stay. We will never see oil below 100$ a barrel in our lifetimes. I used to laugh at the Experts who predicted this.
        What I have learned in my relatively short life is that Experts are not experts , Most science is junk now. All the good science was done pre 1960.

      • Remember the so called “Mideast experts” which appeared from nowhere during the various Gulf Wars?
        Not a single one ever called a dang thing correctly.
        This was my first awakening to the reality that “expert” is another word for “garrulous jackass”.

        Except re blog commenters. Those guys have a head on their shoulders.

  12. This is more nonsense to get more money for the bureau. It is just that simple.

    Google “Two Minute Conservative” for more.

  13. The phrase “not even wrong” comes to mind. If you can not test something, it is an matter of faith and not of science. Having said that, if folks were to say that the sea level rise that we have seen for the past 500+ years will continue at that rate into the next 100 years, I could live with it since I could test the rate of rise against the historical number in a short period to see if the hypothesis was violated.

    • Or, we could recognize that most places which are adjacent to a shoreline are regularly wiped clean my strong coastal storms.
      This is why coastlines the world over mostly look about the same…few or no trees…no old ones at all…mostly rocks and …wait for it…SAND!
      The stuff that is left when rock and dirt and everything else is pounded day after day by water and wave action:

      http://biblehub.com/matthew/7-26.htm

  14. Slightly off topic but I would like some answers and opinions on this sea level question….

    “How much lower would global sea level be if humans had never lived?”

    I have an estimate I use but would like to see how others come to an answer.

  15. The part that seems missing to me is some understanding of the dynamic nature of such tidal marshes. For example, they say:

    -Sediment Elevation Tables (SETs)

    Coastal wetlands normally accrete sediment at a rate similar to the rate at which they lose sediment to erosion. However with sea-level rise, coastal wetlands are in danger of being inundated or eroded before they can refill. SETs are being used to determine changes in marsh surface elevation due to either accretion (sediment input) or erosion. SETs also measure contributions of surface and subsurface processes (i.e. root growth, decomposition, compaction, water flux) and influence of these processes on overall marsh elevation.

    So they are measuring the right stuff, the sediment elevation … but they think it is in some kind of delicate balance, viz:

    “However with sea-level rise, coastal wetlands are in danger of being inundated or eroded before they can refill.”

    However, given that sea levels have been rising for hundreds of years … how do these folks think that the tidal marshes are still around? Obviously, the tidal marshes have been rising right along with the sea level, duh …

    So we have some choices. Either:

    a) the scientists don’t realize that the marshes rise with the sea level, or

    b) the scientists don’t realize that there has been no sign of the long-predicted acceleration in sea level rise, or

    c) the scientists do realize the above, but they don’t mention it because it is off message, with the message being alarmism, or

    d) the scientists think the collection of the data is important, which it is, and so they stay schtumm and read their instruments and don’t rock the boat, or

    e) ???

    Your call,

    w.

    • Or, it’s easier to sit in front of a computer, put what-if scenarios into your model, and publish the result, than it is to go out and do the hard gritty real work of science.

    • I would vote for C without thinking about it. That is the damage Warmists have done to real science. It would not be hard to think of the possibility of two conditions there over the millennia. Salt Marsh and fresh water marsh. That is the history of the south end of San Francisco Bay based on core samples. During the salt marsh times, the Indians had moved out of the forests due to drought and were living in mud huts along the Bay. There are mounds of oyster shells to make it obvious what they were eating for protein. During wet times fresh water plants and mammals abounded to be slowly invaded by salt water species over time during the next drought. It was a constant battle of nature.

      Nothing new here and it probably had more to do with the PDO and El Ninos then anything else.

  16. Clearly no one involved in this study passed a class in basic stratigraphy & understands that facies belts / ecosystems will shift laterally with changes in sea level – they don’t go away, this just shift positions laterally. Of course that doesn’t the alarmist meme very well, does it?

    • Some years ago I spent summer weekends kayaking around the Boston harbor islands. There is this long esker of rock debris stretching between Great Brewster island and Lovell’sIsland.Its quite literally at the surface at low tide. 20K years (LGM) earlier the seashore was estimated to be 12-20 miles further out from today’s harbor shoreline. The 300-400 meter high glacier scraping rock beds in central-western Mass and NH left that long pile of rocks as it retreated and seas rapidly rose. Lots of wetlands exist around Boston Harbor and the Cape.

  17. 100 year threat huh.

    How about deficit spending and the projected growth of entitlement programs in the U.S. over the next 20 years? That seems a more imminent and important disaster to me than sea level rise. Anybody think the U.S. can support 40 trillion in debt?

    • When the median middle class income rises to about $150k a year. When the Federal reserve and US Treasury get caught in the Fiscal Dominance spiral, they just crank up the printing presses and pay off yesterdays debt with worthless paper in the present. But the effect of that wn’t be pretty on savers, only debtors.

  18. Coos Bay is one of the study locations in the report. Let’s look a the nearest “mean sea level trend’ from NOAA. Just around the corner is the Charleston, OR tide gauge. Here’s the linear plot:

    http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9432780

    A whopping

    The mean sea level trend is 0.84 millimeters/year with a 95% confidence interval of +/- 0.86 mm/yr based on monthly mean sea level data from 1970 to 2014 which is equivalent to a change of 0.27 feet in 100 years.

    That’s 3 1/4 in/100. Also easy to see that SL here, like most of the Western coast of the US – has not been rising for quite some time.

    It’s been some 65 years since the birth of AGW (that’s the consensus view – right?)

    If it’s not started by now . . . wake me up when something starts trending upwards.

    I rest my case.

    • Talk about the noise exceeding the signal! There are three months of high tides that stand out above all the rest…none are in this millennium.

    • oregon and washington coastline are also rising due to uplifting tectonics of the subduction zone off shore. That masks some of the real SLR on the tidal record.

      • That’s a given. But SLR along the entire West Coast pales to most places. Still, when it breaks loose – the coastline will fall back like a rock.

    • “The mean sea level trend is 0.84 millimeters/year with a 95% confidence interval of +/- 0.86 mm/yr…”
      I would call this no measurable change.

  19. I do like Anthony’s introduction paragraph on this one: superbly worded.

    So, they start by saying …

    “University released a report … ”
    = grant money from the Great Global Warming Gravy Train.

    “Scientists found that …”
    = Gustavo Bisbal, aided by a permanent latrine orderly who may or not be a scientist.

    “Delivering robust science …”
    = misusing nice little phrases which sound impressive but are really smoke & mirrors.

    “these critical habitats …” (there is no such thing: a habitat is what it is, or not).

    ” this information is poorly understood” (by whom ?).

    “This information is timely and at the scale needed to help coastal resource managers plan for climate change, …”
    = This DIS-information keeps us well funded but we don’t ever tell you that.

    “Scientists took a thorough snapshot … ”
    = both our students borrowed an old camera but they couldn’t really figure it out.

    “The group then used models of sea level rise … ” (See Bruce’s comment at 10.37a.m.)

    “The center is one of eight that provides scientific information to help … ”
    = The center is one of eight that provides information like a twenty dollar whore, solely for the purpose of cashing in on very large amounts of your hard-earned tax-dollars and all with the approval of the EPA.. We’ll suck it dry as long as we can.

  20. Given the active tectonic setting of coastal Oregon and Washington state, one would have thought that a bunch of geologists would be the first to appreciate the relative and tenuous nature of the term ‘sea level’ in this instance. They might have boned up on the coastal effects of the 1964 Alaskan earthquake and then consulted with colleagues in Indonesia and Japan on their thoughts on phenomena such as tsunami, before releasing such infantile claptrap for ridicule.

  21. Meanwhile . . while we’re sweating bullets worrying about a couple inches of SL rise over the next 100 years . . something else is brewing that should be on the front burner. Something you can taste.

    The Cascadia fault along the Pacific Northwest, is due to “really” past due. Estimates are in the range of 9.0, and note: this is a thrust fault. The resulting ( from recent Atlantic article) “tsunami will be moving more than twice that fast when it arrives. Its height will vary with the contours of the coast, from twenty feet to more than a hundred feet. It will not look like a Hokusai-style wave, rising up from the surface of the sea and breaking from above. It will look like the whole ocean, elevated, overtaking land. Nor will it be made only of water—not once it reaches the shore. It will be a five-story deluge of pickup trucks and doorframes and cinder blocks and fishing boats and utility poles and everything else that once constituted the coastal towns of the Pacific Northwest.”

    Will do wonders to the “coastal wetlands.” FEMA estimates that the destruction will extend all the way to Interstate 5.

    But that’s not all. Just before that 100 foot wall of ocean arrives . .

    A 2004 study conducted by the Geological Society of America analyzed the potential for land subsidence along the Cascadia subduction zone. It postulated that several towns and cities on the west coast of Vancouver Island, such as Tofino and Ucluelet, are at risk for a sudden, earthquake initiated, 1–2 m subsidence.

    So . . first, you drop 3 to 6 feet, and face that wall of water coming in . . and then the big one comes at you.

    Everything in the wetlands will be instantly destroyed – every plant uprooted. Every creature pushed miles inland. What wasn’t pulverized on the way in, will be shredded on the way out.

    But somehow, the media is going to be more frightened about the 100 year prediction of a couple of inches of SL rise, than that which will destroy the region in only a few minutes time.

    • There will be a lot of mostly overweight dead people in that five story tsunami. Those things hurt!

  22. “Over the next 100 years, wind and solar power might replace every other electricity source.”

    Well this obviously cannot be correct; controlled fusion power is only ten years away.. or was it fifteen? Or so we are told quite often.
    ;-)

  23. The real danger of sea level rise in the Pacific Northwest has nothing to do with melting ice caps and glaciers. It has everything to do with the Cascadia Subduction Zone under the Pacific Ocean.

    The Juan de Fuca plate has been trying to subduct under the North American plate for 315 years, but has been locked. In that time the northwest coast has been uplifted under the stress. That fault ruptures on average of every 243 years. When Cascadia lets go, it releases a great quake. When that happens the continent falls back down below the current sea level by many feet. Then it gets washed over by a large tsunami.

    Now that’s a real sea level rise problem!!

    • Yeah but the problem is that it is hard to blame people for plates and faults. A “Juan de Fuca plate Tax” is a hard sell as a tax and impossible as a consumption tax.

      That is the beauty of CO2, it is an easy resource to apply a consumption tax to.

      Global Warming should be more accurately called “Global Use Tax”.

  24. Aries: your 100 year outlook. In 2115 Jupiter will be crossing the path of Uranus meaning you will feel very old and constipated. I think this is a good summery of the science

  25. Join the club,

    My city Christchurch New Zealand has caught the bug real and truly.

    See http://resources.ccc.govt.nz/files/policiesreportsstrategies/dpr-stage3-infosheet-naturalhazards.pdf

    See P2. “What we are proposing” column 2 “ “FLFMA rules” “These areas are almost the same as FLFMAs (and already have FLFMA rules). The new rules assume a one metre sea level rise within the next 100 years.”

    What are FLFMA rules? http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/10723747/Flood-plan-will-increase-cost-of-rebuild

    Of course I cannot get my hands on a copy of the FLFMA rules.

    The new rule seems to be consistent with
    http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_Chapter13_FINAL.pdf
    13.3.3 Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets

    “Observations indicate that the Greenland contribution to GMSL has very likely increased from 0.09 [–0.02 to 0.20] mm yr–1 for 1992–2001 to 0.59 [0.43 to 0.76] mm yr–1 for 2002–2011 (Section 4.4.3, Figure 13.4). The average rate of the Antarctica contribution to sea level rise likely increased from 0.08 [–0.10 to 0.27] mm yr–1 for 1992–2001 to 0.40 [0.20 to 0.61] mm yr–1 for 2002–2011 (Section 4.4.3). For the budget period 1993–2010, the combined contribution of the ice sheets is 0.60 [0.42 to 0.78] mm yr–1. For comparison, the AR4’s assessment for the period 1993–2003 was 0.21 ± 0.07 mm yr–1 for Greenland and 0.21 ± 0.35 mm yr–1 for Antarctica.

    Typical NZ local government flexing its new found powers bequeathed to them by the previous socialist prime minister who is incidentally now No.3 in the United Nations.

    Suggest everyone check their own local government rules, no matter where you may be.

    Cheers

    Roger

    http://www.thedemiseofchristchurch.com

  26. I think in 100 years the sceptics will be saying no global warming in 118 years. NOAA will be adding 3 degrees to the temperature readings and the EPA will be saying do not debate climate change.

    • The skeptics will all be dead. Their offspring will have been indoctrinated into the AGW cult by the education system. They will be living in a socialist Utopia with most of the population gainfully employed for the common good, cleaning solar panels and servicing windmills.

    • Of all the forecasts I’ve seen of climate, that would appear to be the most likely one to come true

    • Would you?
      It’s scary out there! And getting scarier by the minute, week, year, decade and century.
      In many cases, it got scarier already and we didn’t even know it.

  27. “This study provides critical scientific findings to help natural resource managers develop and implement conservation and adaptation actions as the coastal areas of Oregon and Washington prepare for rising sea levels,” said the Department of the Interior’s Northwest Climate Science Center director, Gustavo Bisbal.

    (A) Sea level rise? He seems to believe what Al the Gore proclaimed….
    (B) That poor fellow is telling us to work against Mother Nature no matter what it costs. If Al the Gore were right, there is absolutely no reason to bother about wetlands or marshes, he’d then bother about the seabed. He never seemed to have heard that adaptation is the key to his grief and despair. It’s less troublesome and definitely cheaper.

  28. On such small things life turns. If the Yellowstone Caldera erupts, if the San Andreas does the inevitable and if fracking in Lancashire, England, causes the ‘Blackpool Tower’ to topple…no one envisaged the 2007 Tsunami. Life is nasty, brutish and short but the sight of latter day King Canute’s predicting the outcome of the halting of the tide seems totally spurious and has the effect of offering celebrity to people who just do not have the bearing to carry it. As Parliament was once referred to as “show business for ugly people”, so climate science is that of activists and the third age. People who want the world to survive by their efforts. Some task, but no lack of egos, no shortage of the messianic.

    Today in Britain we hear the weather men on our public media service, the BBC, promising their audience that ‘tomorrow’ will be warmer and inevitably their faces and voices carry that world-weary expression of resignation (because Britain, outside the south east, has not been warm. You could not plan a barbecue here, as anyone watching the golf Open Championship on the television this year would be fully aware) while last night, in the Glens of Scotland, many places experienced frosts . Britain, a place whose northern tip is nearly on the same line of latitude as the southern tip of Greenland, has the most unpredictable weather imaginable. As a child, I was taught that the path of depressions affecting our weather in summer was over Iceland yet, in recent years, the path of summer depressions is more likely to be through the Scottish Midlands.

    You have to bear in mind that the BBC has banned climate scepticism yet the forecasters it employs are all too well of aware of the prevailing conditions and make a charade of circumstances by proposing a warming future while pandering to their audience with the hope of warmth. Who are the deniers? We would be better off employing soothsayers as our entire world is taken up with portents and necromancy. This is the sceptical and inevitable reaction to science its promise of illumination and security unfulfilled. No matter what science may unveil the human condition prevails. We are innately gloomy and insecure, nothing we have made or envisaged has made us happier. In some respects, the less we knew the more control we had over our existences and the more thankful we were for our being. The ancient Egyptians put their trust in the living god, the Pharaoh, and were lost, Christians put their trust in a benign God and with the decline in faith have turned to predictors, necromancers, casters of runes, people looking into entrails who, through their divine power, hold the rest in thrall.

  29. I remember the good old days when the fine people at the US Geological Survey used to go out into the field and study Geology.

  30. Here’s another prediction:

    Over the next 100 years, we will actually have a consistent and meaningful definition of sea level and global temperature.

    Well that may take 200 years.

  31. But sea level rise will eventually outpace marsh growth and drown most high and mid-marsh habitats by 2110.

    What rate of sea level rise they are calculating with?

    Facts:
    1. Global rate of sea level rise is less than 3 mm/year since the end of 1992 as observed by satellites (GIA adjusted rate is 3.28 mm/year, adjustment is 0.3 mm/year).
    2. There is no acceleration in global sea level rise since the end of 1992 (observed deceleration is -83 mm/century squared).
    3. In the US west coast observed rate of sea level rise is substantially less than global average (~0.5 mm/year), probably because of a rising coastline.

    I wonder how 2 inches of sea level rise could drown most high and mid-marsh habitats.

    • Here is the most likely source.

      I do not vouch for its accuracy and neither should governments vouch for its authority.

      http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_Chapter13_FINAL.pdf

      13.3.3 Greenland and Antarctic Ice Sheets

      “Observations indicate that the Greenland contribution to GMSL has very likely increased from 0.09 [–0.02 to 0.20] mm yr–1 for 1992–2001 to 0.59 [0.43 to 0.76] mm yr–1 for 2002–2011 (Section 4.4.3, Figure 13.4). The average rate of the Antarctica contribution to sea level rise likely increased from 0.08 [–0.10 to 0.27] mm yr–1 for 1992–2001 to 0.40 [0.20 to 0.61] mm yr–1 for 2002–2011 (Section 4.4.3). For the budget period 1993–2010, the combined contribution of the ice sheets is 0.60 [0.42 to 0.78] mm yr–1. For comparison, the AR4’s assessment for the period 1993–2003 was 0.21 ± 0.07 mm yr–1 for Greenland and 0.21 ± 0.35 mm yr–1 for Antarctica.

      Cheers

      Roger

      http://www.thedemiseofchristchurch.com

  32. • Over the next 100 years, we might finally get those flying cars we’ve been promised.

    I’m thinking of cryogenic preservation when I die. My instructions will be to revive me, not when they have found the cure for whatever bumped me off, but when flying cars are in nearly every garage.

    *Sigh* I’ll probably never get thawed out.

  33. Simple third or fourth grade experiment or it was when I went to school!
    Put come ice cubes in a glass and mark it above the ice with some tape, next fill it with water up to the tape and watch until all the ice melts. Does the level of the water in the glass rise as the ice melts? Answer; it won’t it will stay at the same level after all the ice melted.

    • And what would you expect me to infer from your “simple third or fourth grade experiment?”

      Try this one…put an ice cube on a dry plate. Measure the water depth. Wait for the ice cube to melt. Measure the water depth.

  34. Sea level creeping up? Remind us when it’s as high as the first century AD…then we can put the ports where the Romans had them, way inland.

  35. “Delivering robust science with practical management application is of focal significance to our science program.”
    Techno-babble! There is nothing robust about their ‘science’, It is delectably Impractical, and focal significance is meaningless. Absolutely NO commponsense.

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