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The world’s most famous climate scientist just outlined an alarming scenario for our planet’s future

A handout photograph provided by NASA shows glaciers and mountains in the evening sun during an Operation IceBridge research flight, returning from West Antarctica, 29 October 2014. EPA/MICHAEL STUDINGER / HANDOUT

A handout photograph provided by NASA shows glaciers and mountains in the evening sun during an Operation IceBridge research flight, returning from West Antarctica, 29 October 2014. EPA/MICHAEL STUDINGER / HANDOUT

In the new study, Hansen and his colleagues suggest that the “doubling time” for ice loss from West Antarctica — the time period over which the amount of loss could double — could be as short as 10 years. In other words, a non-linear process could be at work, triggering major sea level rise in a time frame of 50 to 200 years. By contrast, Hansen and colleagues note, the IPCC assumed more of a linear process, suggesting only around 1 meter of sea level rise, at most, by 2100.

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Beginning in Fall 2011, ACT partnered with the University of Western Ontario-led Coastal Cities at Risk (CCaR): Building Adaptive Capacity for Managing Climate Change in Coastal Megacities program as the coordinator for research in Vancouver, the major Canadian city featured in the program. CCaR is led by former ACT policy author Dr. Gordon McBean (Climate Change Adaptation and Extreme Weather), and partnering with universities in Lagos, Bangkok and Manila.

The objective of the program is to develop the knowledge base and enhance the capacity of megacities to successfully adapt to and when necessary cope with risks posed by the effects of climate change, including sea level rise, in the context of urban growth and development. The cities were chosen to have a range of climate-weather, socio-cultural-economic characteristics; be representative of other cities; and provide enhanced research opportunities through ongoing efforts.

The outputs will be new, integrated knowledge on climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction strategies and their socio-economic-health implications; integrated, interdisciplinary simulation models to develop, test and validate knowledge-based adaptation actions; and increased numbers of highly-qualified people, both academic and practitioners, through knowledge mobilization and translation.

 

 

 

 

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