Rising sea levels from global warming could destroy Thames Estuary in UK

March 9th, 2009 - 2:16 pm ICT by ANI  

London, March 9 (ANI): Climatologists have warned that rising sea levels caused by global warming could destroy the Norfolk Broads and Thames Estuary in the UK within a hundred years.

According to a report in the Telegraph, low-lying areas of the UK are under threat because the Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets are melting faster than previously thought.

Climate change is also likely to lead to super storms that will batter the coastlines of Britain.

Cities including London, Hull and Portsmouth are all likely to need new defences to prevent devastating flooding.

It is now clear that there are going to be massive flooding disasters around the globe, said Dr David Vaughan of the British Antarctic Survey.

Populations are shifting to the coast, which means that more and more people are going to be threatened by sea level rises, he added.

Original predictions suggested sea-level was likely to rise between 20 and 60cm by 2100, but failed to take into account the impact of melting ice-sheets because the data was not understood.

Revised estimates suggest sea-level rises could top one meter by 2100, a figure backed up by the US Geological Survey who said it could reach up to 1.5m.

According to climatologists, storms caused by climate change could see super tidal surges hitting the UK coastline.

East Anglia, the Thames Estuary and low-lying cities are all at risk without huge investment.

Climate change shows there will be significant increases in storms as global temperatures rise, said Dr Colin Brown, of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (ImechE).

These will produce much more intense gales and hurricanes and these, in turn, will produce massive storm surges as they pass over the sea, he added.

The IMechE has warned that the country will face massive disruption to its transport and energy systems. Many rail lines run along valleys which will be flooded.

It has also warned that many areas of the country may have to be abandoned because they are too expensive to protect. (ANI)

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