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Rapid sea level rise was supposed to shrink Earth’s coasts. It hasn’t.
I. Despite sea level rise, “the coasts are growing all over the world”
Sea - Levels - Areas - Scale
Sea levels aren’t rising fast enough to deleteriously affect coastal areas on a net global scale.
Satellite observations indicate there has been 13,565 km2 of net growth in land area across the globe’s coasts between 1985-2015.
Words - Earth - Coasts - Area - Sea
In other words, the Earth’s coasts gained more land area than were lost to rising sea levels.
As a visual example, Ahmed et al. (2018) find that Bangladesh’s coastal land area grew by 7.9 km2 per year during 1985-2015.
Between - Globe - Sea - Levels - Rate
Between 1958-2014, the globe’s sea levels rose at a rate of about 1.4 mm yr−1 , or 14 centimeters (5.5 inches) per century (Frederikse et al., 2018).
Ice melt from Greenland and Antarctica contributed a grand total of 1.5 cm of the 7.9 cm (3.1 inches) of sea level rise during those 56 years.
Regions - World - Sea - Levels - Rates
However, there are regions of the world where sea levels are rising at rates two or three times the global average. Tuvalu, representing over 100 islands located in the central west Pacific, has undergone “twice the global average” rate of sea level rise (~3.90 ± 0.4 mm yr−1) since the 1970s.
It would be expected that such high rates of local sea level change would result in shrinking island coasts and overall land area during this period.
Opposite - Increase - Land - Area - Tuvalu
But the opposite has occurred. There has been a net increase in the coastal land area of Tuvalu between 1971-2014 in 8 of 9 atolls.
“We specifically examine spatial differences in island behaviour, of all 101 islands in Tuvalu, over the past four decades (1971–2014), a period in which local sea level has risen at twice the global average. Surprisingly, we show that all islands have changed and that the dominant mode of change has been island expansion, which has...
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