In current events, two studies suggest that the collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet (predicted back in the 1970s to occur as a consequence of unchecked global warming), has already begun. This will lead during the next century to sea level rises of up to 4 m. What is striking is that the atmospheric and oceanic changes that put the ice sheet into motion have progressed to the point that its collapse is inevitable. It WILL happen even if we were able, through a miraculous feat of political cooperation, to roll back back carbon emissions. It is just a question of how long it will take, and some people alive today may well be here to witness the aftermath.
In other news, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida says he doesn’t believe the consensus that the climate is warming. This statement came just days after the release of an international report outlining the evidence that climate warming is well under way (and a day before the reports about the West Antarctic ice sheet).
So, this got me wondering: what would Senator Rubio’s home state look like if (actually when) the ice sheet collapses? Using a map generating program at the University of Arizona web site, I made the following map. It shows areas that will be inundated by sea-level rises of 3 meters (red) and 4 meters (orange). Thank you, Senator, for your service.