Sea Level Rise in Chennai Due to Climate Crisis
Global warming is the heating of Earth's climate system for long periods. It began from the pre-industrial period (between 1850 and 1900) as a result of human activity, principally due to fossil fuel combustion, which increases greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere. Extreme changes in climate, increasing levels of pollution and sea level rise are some of the effects of global warming. They are becoming more prominent day after day, and seem to be only expanding. I read three reports on climate change that were all equally disturbing and alarming.
So, I decided to write this blog post based on certain facts about sea level rise and the effects of climate change on the planet. Out of the three, a report in today’s (OCT 31, 2019) Malayala Manorama newspaper quoting the Climate Central study was particularly troubling. On top of all this, the Hindu reported that the Delhi Government will issue 5 million masks for school children to wear, considering the high pollution levels in the capital city. Where is the world headed? What could be done to control global warming?
List of Contents
1. Sea Level Rise due to Climate Change
The central climate study states that a substantial area of the earth will be affected by the sea level rise by 2050. I looked at the Chennai sea level rise map and was shocked to see that a major portion of the city will be affected by flooding. By 2100, areas that are home to 200 million people will fall below the high tide line and inundate. According to the study, the projected sea level rise by 2050 can be up to 2.1 meters, and the improved elevation data finds that even with moderate reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, India could face annual coastal flooding threats by 2050. Use this link to view the whole report:
Another article in the Hindu newspaper reported that Madurai recorded 343.5mm rainfall in 24 hours, ending on the morning of 30th October 2019, and Ramanathapuram district received a total rainfall of 475.30 mm. One should note that 827mm is the average annual rainfall, where 50% of it was received with a week. What Madurai got in a day was more than 10% of the annual rainfall of Kerala.
2. Ways of Managing Rising Sea Level
The following are some of the possible ways of regulating the effects of sea level rise.
Barriers can protect an enormous space of land in a single sweep. They include dams, doors, locks or a progression of them that oversees flowing streams and restricts them.
2.2 Elevated Development
Raising the existing level of the land, and infrastructure can help in protecting it from the changes in sea level.
2.3 Floating Development
Floating homes can be secured to the shore or fastened to the ocean floor. Structures that float on the outer layer of the water might be drifted during a flood, making them generally insusceptible to the elevating tides.
Living shorelines or wetlands are fundamental for the well-being of estuaries. They shelter coastlines from floods and disintegration by engrossing the waves. They also help in easing back the progression of high water levels.
2.5 Planned Abandonments
Planned abandonment of threatened areas near the shoreline can help in shielding them from uncertain floods. It includes leaving, obliterating or moving existing structures and foundations to higher ground. It additionally involves forbidding new improvement of regions liable to be immersed.
Have a look at the Chennai sea level rise map by following the link below:
It is clear from the map that drastic measures need to be implemented at the earliest to prevent the sea level rise 2050 from happening. All solutions to slow global warming fall under three broad categories namely- reducing emissions, adapting to climate change, and financing required changes. Industries and businesses should come together to reduce carbon emissions. The government should also introduce more policies and bring in advanced reforms. We should realize that every small action we take has an impact on the environment, and practice more sustainable ways of living. Starting now can help us save countless lives and resources.