London Underwater, by the Telegraph 12/28/2006
Raising Water Levels on London and China’s Drought/Grain Problem
As we close 2006 and look to 2007, two global warming major reports – one from Finland and other from China – presents the increasingly dire environmental situation we are facing globally.
And whether or not one believes climate change is chiefly man-made or not, we are both under prepared for the coming climate change and making only small progress in curtailing the pollution contributing to global warming.
The two separate reports suggests that:
- London will be partially submerged: “A sea level rise of a metre or more would be “very bad news” for major coastal cities, greatly increasing the risk of devastating storm surges. Particularly at risk are cities on or close to North Atlantic shores, such as London, according to his study in the journal Science.” (Telegraph, 12/18/2006)
- China will face drought and challenges feeding its growing population: “The official [government, SU's note] assessment concludes that hotter weather and increased evaporation will outweigh greater rain and snowfall. In the country’s south, heavier rainfalls could trigger more landslides and mudslides, it also warns. Luo indicated that by 2030-2050, China’s potential grain output could fall by 10 percent, unless crop varieties and practices adapt to the increasingly turbulent climate.” (Reuters, 12/27/2006)
What will the US Preparedness Plan and Response Be? Will it be Regional or Global?
Some examples of government response to pollution and climate change:
- China has been increasingly placing focus on environmental issues, as both as a way to undercut protests regarding deteriorating environment in parts of China and ensure the overall sustainability and stability of China.
- The UK has the Thames Estuary 2100 Project, which seeks to help protect London from a raising Thames through 2100.
With the considerable number of US cities on coastal areas – San Francisco, New York, Seattle, Miami etc – when should we expect a co-ordinate state and federal level of long term 20,50,100 years ahead study on risks of the US coastlines?
What studies and plans does the US have to protect the agricultural lands? Investments in agricultural technology? 10, 20, 50 outline of possible changes in fertileness of the land and how it will effect the US internally to feed itself and externally where it sells its food globally and as a diplomatic tool (giving grain as aid, etc).
Will the US take lead regional, globally in preparing and planning? Or at least focusing on specific areas where disruption of usual weather patterns can spark massive drought and with it conflict and war?
This is far too ambitious thinking for the Bush Administration, as it faces issues in Iraq and of a sitting-duck Presidency, but what will the next administration due?