Sea level rise was in the news again this week as NASA announced we are locked into 3 feet by 2100. One of our favorite climate scientists, Josh Willis of the JASON 3 mission released a couple of fascinating videos explaining what’s causing sea level rise, and also why sea level rise is happening at different rates in different parts of the world.
He also explains why up to now, sea level rise has actually been slightly declining here on the West coast of the United States (due primarily to the “negative” phase of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) – how the Pacific Ocean flows over time), but that we may now be switching to a “positive” phase of the PDO, in which case we should expect our sea levels to rise here soon!
One interesting tidbit we didn’t know: 1 cm of sea level rise equals 3 feet of beach loss. So even though 1 cm doesn’t sound like much, it can have a big impact on our beaches.
Sea level rise is one of the more visible ways we will see climate change impacting our shores in the coming years, and so this topic has inspired artists from all genres. We’ve posted many different art works inspired by sea level rise here on Earth Art Bainbridge; this one is a series of photographs by the UK-based artist Manual Alvarez Diestro of the city of Benidorm in Spain. The photographs are taken at sea level to give the impression of water inundation.