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Aja B.
  • Aja B.
  • New York, NY
  • United States

Online Community Manager, TED


This conversation is closed.

Happening Now: Live Q&A with TED Books Author Daniel Grossman on "Deep Water" and the Science of Rising Sea Levels

*** Live Q&A with Author Daniel Grossman: Tuesday, August 21st, 1pm-2pm EDT (New York Time) ***

We're starting a regular TED Book discussion group here on TED Conversations. Would you like to join us?

For the next two weeks, we'll be using this space to discuss Daniel Grossman's new book on the science of rising sea levels, "Deep Water". The TED Books are designed to be read in a single sitting, so it should be a quick read, and it will give us a good shared starting point for a broader discussion on climate change and what the future holds for our planet.

These are short eBooks, available for Kindles, Nooks, and iPads/iPods/iPhones. I believe you can also read Kindle books on your Mac or PC now, and if you have an iOS device, there's a new TED Books app.

Download options: http://www.ted.com/pages/tedbooks_library
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008R8U1LU/

At the end of our two-week discussion, author Daniel Grossman will be joining in for a Live Q&A session to share his thoughts and answer any questions we might have.


Closing Statement from Aja B.

Many thanks to Daniel Grossman and all our participants! This was an interesting and educational journey. To learn more about Dan's work, you can visit his website here: http://dangrossmanmedia.com

  • Aug 7 2012: Just finished reading/listening/viewing on Kindle for Mac. Hadn't heard about TED Books before this. Pretty good deal. Although naturally interested in the climate change information, found myself at least as drawn to the stories of the scientists and to the process of environmental science itself. Given the grave nature of the subject, hope it's ok to say that this book sure makes science look an adventure - and even fun. Should have studied harder in college!

    Would love to discuss how much these scientists feel tension between a desire to be left alone to just "do science", and the sense of responsibility that must come with contemplating the results of their research. Also, how (or whether) they draw lines between "what I know from the details of my research" and all the rest of the climate change discussion.

    Going back for a second read.
    • Aug 7 2012: Good point, Kevin.

      I know of many scientists who are very serious about their science and realize that they are discovering signs of very worrisome phenomena. Just to take a couple of examples, Lonnie Thompson, who studies tropical glaciers, has been studying the Quelcaaya Ice Cap in Peru (the word's largest such glacier) for more than three decades. Among other things, he's show that Quelcaaya has shrunk by about 25% since he's been studying it. It's now smaller than it's been in 50 centuries. (Read about him here http://bit.ly/S13v2e) Another amazingly dedicated scientist is Bill Fraser, who's been going to Palmer Station on the Antarctic Peninsula for more than 30 years, documenting the decline of the population of Adelie penguins there (which, by a complicated process, he believes is attributable to global warming). Like Thompson, he's deeply worried about what his findings signify. (You can read about him here. (http://bit.ly/NzwE1X).

      These scientists can't ignore the significance of their work, but they never signed up to be activists. They are puzzled by how indifferently the US public and its leaders embrace clear scientific results. Also, they've seen how in a way being outspoken can diminish their influence. Just look at today's New York Times story about a paper on climate extremes by James Hansen. (http://nyti.ms/RmDihj) A fair amount of space is devoted to his activism and whether that might diminish his credibility. Hansen's the luckiest one in a sense because he's already made it through the meat grinder. The scientist Michael Mann was pummeled over his research on past climate (and his "hockey stick" representation of recent temperatures).
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        Aug 12 2012: To that point (I'm halfway through reading), I'm wondering if the data analysis in James Hansen's latest paper has influenced the mindset of any of the scientists in the book. Do the scientists themselves look askance at him because of his activism?
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      Aug 13 2012: I agree, Dan's decision to tell this story as a back-and-forth between the hard science and the personalities involved was a great one, and not just for the ease of reading. I'd never stopped to consider how fragmented climate change research is across so many different fields of study, and how much of an effect each individual personality has on the science.

      Everyone seems to agree, for the most part, that humans are causing the Earth's temperature to rise beyond the planet's natural cycles, but how and why apparently depends on what type of scientist you ask! Paul Hearty is a rock expert, and views ocean levels through that lens. Maureen Raymo is a geochemist, so her understanding of ocean levels comes from a completely different perspective. Fortunately for the rest of us, they're willing and able to work together to better understand the larger picture, but is this the norm? Dan points out the friction caused by difficulty securing funds for unfashionable vs. fashionable science... how much of this research is "siloed" within particular fields, and how much of it is being undertaken by the sort of inter-disciplinary team Raymo put together?
  • Aug 15 2012: I haven't read the book, but certainly sounds like my kinda topic. I'm all for the inviolable earth and 'her' need for 'our' clement discernment along with responsibility.

    As far as I savvy - a great contribution to the rising sea levels are brought on by the over-extraction of oil. Since oil is the natural first phase cooling system for earth, we can recognize why the planets water is overworked here. Consequently the fast melting of ice caps. This over-extraction has also contributed to earthquakes.

    I guess it's okay to tap into the resources planet earth provide, however not okay when abused as in the ways profiteers are doing. Thus imperative for humanity earth to seek alternatives, not only for us but all species.
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    Aug 13 2012: Daniel Grossman

    This is one effect of one part of the collapse of one earth system: ocean level. My concern is not that your projections are exaggerated. My concern is that we (humanity at large) do not have enough effort directed toward solving the problems of our overworked global systems. Natural capital and ecosystem services are largely ignored.

    You and Hanson (and many others) are on the right track and reasonable in your projections as far as I am concerned. There is no excuse for the way you are treated in the media and the political arena.

    Many of the traditions of civilization are in need of redefinition. Everywhere we should have or carry a globe of the Earth as a reminder about what team we are on and what the cost is of being a loser in this game.

    World Game on.

    Mark Hurych
    PS: After we move to high ground or otherwise respond to the issue of ocean level rise, we still have design problems to solve in order to thrive through this century. Biodiversity collapse and the current sixth great extinction episode may be the greatest challenge of all.
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    Aug 12 2012: What particularly concerns me is the effect of increased oceanic volume on the tectonic plates and fault lines of the planet especially the Pacific 'ring of fire'. The moon exerts enough influence on the movement of the oceans to cause the high and low tides we all see at the coast. The moon actually pulls the waters in an oval shape around the earth (my vocab. does not extend to the technical terms for this). I am concerned the stresses of the tectonic plates might cause volcanic eruptions, which would add to the mix by putting so much ash in the atmosphere the U.V. light of the sun might get blocked. It does not have to be an all out catastrophe scenario, just wondering about all the algal and plankton type blooms and how the change in water volume might affect them. Believe the excessive flooding of India and other places in the past few years an indication something is really out of balance.
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    Aug 12 2012: Am really interested in the topic of the weather and would like to join in here. The weather here in the U.K, for the past 2-3 years has been very odd. Early dry, hot spring then wet,damp summers then long autumns and some quite severe but dry winters. On the daily weather broadcasts the forecaters have been suggesting the jet-stream and the North Atlantic Drift are 'in the wrong place'. Apparently recently there was a warm spot over the North Pole which has caused huge amounts of ice to melt and meant no end of really heavy rain here. I am of the opinion that the oceans are condensers and filters and that 'Mother' Nature is trying to restablish a balance. The butterfly population seems to have been in decline for a number of years but this year they are back. What we are lacking now is the birds to mop up all the excess insects. Excessive rain is the mortal enemy of insects like bees. Just to add to the mix, a tidal flow barrier was built on the River Thames close to Greenwich to prevent flooding from tidal surges coming down from the North Sea. Apparently with the rising sea levels and the more intense storms it might not be as effective as hoped. Am going to read the book and want to post my other thoughts about global weather patterns and the impact on food production later. Thank you for this format for discussions.
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      Aug 13 2012: Hi Elizabeth -- A book you might enjoy after reading this one is "The Little Ice Age: How Climate Made History, 1300-1850." If you know your British history, it's fascinating to realize how the changing weather patterns over the last few centuries affected world events.
      • Aug 13 2012: In recent years, scientists have started using the term "Earth system," when describing the interacting relationships between all the parts of the climate, the oceans, the biosphere, the cryosphere (ice), etc. The important point of that is that they're realize how all these parts interact.

        Most people, to the extent to which they ever think about global warming, just think of a change in temperature and nothing more. But the temperatures differences around the planet are the driving force of the "heat engine" that runs storms, winds and, to some extent, ocean currents. That means that all these different phenomena get changed. That has impacts on plants and animals and also on the human built world. Last year, after Hurricane Irene, I went up to the White Mountains of New Hampshire for a hike. I had to walk part of the way to the trailhead because a bridge was washed out. On the forest road I took, a large section of the road had been washed away when a culvert overflowed. All these things showed me how closely to the margin we've built our world. Our infrastructure is made to accommodate a rather restricted range of conditions. If those conditions change, as is occurring, our massive investments in buildings, bridges, highways and the like are unsuitable. The potential cost of rebuilding could be astronomical.
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          Aug 13 2012: I beleve humans have always loved the sea. I think it is a combination of the light wavelengths and the rhythmic pulse of the tide, it is to do with our own evolution, we still have waterproof skin and vestigial webbing on our hands and feet. Suggest do need to start to get population moved from coastal and low laying areas. Maybe the prison population might be better employed building some new communities. Massive civil engineering projects helped during the economic depression of the 1930s. There must be a huge pool of transferrable skills in the people on 'work-fare' to administer such projects. Do think it might also be a good idea to start trying to replant the semi-arid areas with plants like cabbage palm (cordyline australis) and mulberry trees, lavender etc. Think the huge deforestation of the South Americas a massive mistake as the Pacific Ocean and the rainforest are the natural filters in the southern hemiisphere. N.Z., has some active volcanoes that could cause considerable damage with minor long term eruptions. Sound like a child because do not have the technological vocab. Dual U.K/N.Z. Psychologists say people motivated by loss not by potential gain but do think an incentivised scheme to move people away from the big cities on the coast might be a really good idea. Most people are too busy trying to pay the bills to think about the big picture. Really worried about the decline in the pollinating insects and birds. Worried about excessive melting of ice on high mountains washing too much soil into rivers. Worried about the efffects on freshwater availabilty and potability. Think about whether the condensing action of the mountains will be compromised because they are not cold enough and if ther filtering actions in terms of insect and dust removal will also be compromised. Hope you understand my rather childish vocab. Do think it is all escalating too fast.
  • Aug 7 2012: I'm getting the book..............and a boat :)
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    Aug 21 2012: Personally it would make us hurt inside to lose my countries native flora as it is one of the last to exist that gave modern science a look into the possible conditions of the triassic era,sad for the world as is the rest of the planet.
    • Aug 21 2012: We often hear people saying, the Earth has been warmer in the past, so what difference does it make. The difference is that ecosystems have developed to live in current conditions. We will lose those ecosystems if the conditions change.
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      Aug 21 2012: Hey Ken, sorry to butt in. Not sure how to join conversation. 19:48 GMT. Watching conversation and loving it.
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      Aug 21 2012: Ken you are so right about the flora and fauna of N.Z.being so important to the world. With the destruction of the rainforest in South Americas some of the species and eco-systems may be replicated in N.Z. by seeds etc carried over on the Pacific currents but there is no way N.Z. could supply the needs of the world.
      Been referring other people to National Permaculture of N.Z. website to do with the thread about feeding people in urban enviroments. Have lots of ideas about the filtering and condensing elements in the Southern hemisphere given lack of mountains in Australia and huge amounts of desert plus implications of mineral mining in Western Australia.
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    • Aug 21 2012: Many of these problems can be viewed from various perspectives. From the perspective of the 4.5 billion year life of the planet, a human life or even a civilization means little. From the perspective of the much longer life of the universe, what happens on Earth means nothing. On the other hand, what we see today around us are ecosystems that have developed and been optimized to current conditions over thousands and millions of years. (some of these "conditions" are a range of conditions, not the exact current climate). We inhabit a world that has been built by human hands over hundreds and thousands of years. Those things are in danger. That's not to say humans won't exist in the future or that life will not exist. But we are endangering things that we may thing are worthy or even sacred.
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        Aug 21 2012: Hi Daniel, Aja, Ken and everyone else. Like Ken I am from N.Z. I fgrew up in Wellington, on the harbour peninsula known as Miramar by Wellington Airport. Love the sea either Seatoun or Scorcher/Worser bays. N.Z. is my eden and any world system change is likely to impact N.Z. first, if it is not the wind it willl be the sea and then possibly the volcanoes. Don't know about glacier melts in South Island but do wonder if it was a factor in Christchurch earthquake. Experienced big quake 1969 plus father involved in rescue of passengers from Aromoana ferry disaster. Still hear Moaning Minne foghorn in my head tho my cousin says she is now turned off as even N.Z., has more sophisticated GPS etc.
  • Aug 21 2012: Aja:

    The climate system is like a humungous flywheel or a giant oil tanker so we can only do so much to change course once we've put it on a course. There are also concerns that there might be different states that the climate system could move to from which it could remain and it would be hard to return to the old one. For instance, once the sea ice in the Arctic becomes absent during the summer, it might be hard to get back to the state where it returns in the summer, because of the positive feedback of the heat absorbed by the water (which is darker than ice).
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      Aug 21 2012: I see... Do you think the planet will ever return to "ice age" conditions?
      • Aug 21 2012: Some scientists I've spoken to say that it does not appear that we can return to ice age conditions in light of climate change. The climate scientist Will Rudiman says has postulated that had not humans started cutting trees down on a massive scale and planted methane producing ice paddies we'd be heading into an ice age right now.
      • Aug 21 2012: Ruddiman thinks that the current warm period has lasted longer than it should have. We should already be cooling off now. But the planet is getting warmer not cooler. The planet is now nearly as warm as it's been at any time in the last 2 million years, as we have oscillated from warm to cool over and over. Another two or three degrees, we'll rise up out of that envelope of oscillation into the conditions of the pliocene, before there were big ice sheets in the northern hemisphere.
      • Aug 21 2012: Whether and how fast we could backtrack is not clear. Even if we stopped producing extra carbon dioxide now, there is still this flywheel effect that would keep the planet warming. The amount of carbon dioxide now in the atmosphere is about the same as there was in the mid-pliocene, 3 million years ago. The carbon dioxide does not immediately leave the atmosphere even once we were to stop adding more. So, the future looks somewhat dim. But there's no question that there is "bad" and "worse."
      • Aug 21 2012: With respect to CO2 output from the US, I'd make to some cautious comments. First, since it just happened and was not part of a policy to make it happen, we can't reply on the drop continuing. I bet part of the drop has to do with the current recession we're in. We hope that our economy will recover somehow and we wouldn't want that to come with renewed growth and CO2 emissions. Some of the reduction probably came from increased use of natural gas. The new technique of hydrofracturing to extract national gas (fracking) has brought down the price of natural gas, which produces less carbon dioxide per unit of energy. That's good in principle. But in practice fracking also releases a fair amount of natural gas into the atmosphere. Natural gas also causes the greenhouse effect, much more powerfully than carbon dioxide. So if even a small fraction of the natural gas escapes into the air before it's collected, the benefits of using natural gas are wiped out.
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    Aug 21 2012: Does rising sea levels cause accelerated coastal erosion as is the case of where my tribes territory is on a headland of a harbour,the biggest in the southern hemisphere.
    • Aug 21 2012: I'm be curious to hear about the territory of your tribe. Of course rising sea level should cause extra erosion. There are other ways that climate change is also changing seashore erosion. In Alaska, famously, certain towns have had shorelines eroded due to reduced sea ice in the winter.
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        Aug 21 2012: There's no actual study i know of of the harbour that says it's due to rising levels and i could be flying a sailess kite but the locals all say they have noticed the inner harbour's low clay cliffs have been eroding faster than usual also the headwaters have a natural high sand bank that makes the harbour unusable for heavy traffic,it's what saved it from becoming another polluted statistic.

        My uncle before he died told me that at sometime in the future our land will become an island,i believe him as he witnessed 60 years of life there.I will try to gather as much official data as i can and pass it on to you.
        • Aug 21 2012: Ken: It is true that we must be careful not to attribute everything bad that we don't understand to climate change. On the other hand there are many bad things that can't be foreseen right now. For instance, I reported on a penguin researcher in Antarctica who is studying how reduced sea ice on the Antarctic Peninsula is causing greater precipitation, which is making it harder for Adelie penguins to raise chicks (as they need snow-free beaches to nest).
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    Aug 21 2012: I thought Heat Waves are the quiet mass murderers.
    • Aug 21 2012: It is true that the increased incidence of heat waves is an important source of concern. I produced a documentary program about the 2003 heatwave in Europe where more than 10,000 died. (see http://bit.ly/OVnNOA) In Paris about 1000 extra people died. No heat like that had occurred in 500 years and researchers have since proven that the intense heat would have been much less likely had not the planet been warming. There are many ways that climate change is changing the conditions that ecosystems have evolved around and that we have built our societies around. Even the more intense rainstorms that are predicted will cause problems. It's not just that intense rainstorms are a problem per se. It's that we have built our world to withstand certain amounts of rain and not much more. When we have more, it overwhelms bridge abutments and culverts, casing roads and bridges to fail. There will be many unexpected instances of these where altered conditions resulting from climate change will surprise and perplex us.
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        Aug 21 2012: What's the mechanism for bringing the overall temperature back down? How does the climate cycle usually go from peak temperatures back to ice age?
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          Aug 21 2012: An idea only.

          We force a mini ice age to come on an begin building huge oxygen plants and try an bring oxygen levels back up.total speculation only but to me i thought we were past the tip of the spear and now it's just damage control?
        • Aug 21 2012: Ken coud we right. I don't think we know. There are some who suggest we try massive engineering projects to cool the plant. Thinks like giant reflectors in space. Or that we put particulate matter in the atmosphere to cool the planet down artificially. This might work, but there are bonafide concerns that we'd be tampering with a system we didn't understand, and would make matters worse. There are also concerns that the existence of such solutions would be used as an excuse for not engaging in sensible prevention (creating less carbon dioxide).
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        Aug 21 2012: Yes you're right Daniel.

        In Auckland we have had instances of flash downpours of rain that has caused flooding in the CBD,though it is uncommon as i can't remember a time where it has happened it could become a common occurrence.

        We've had two instances of waterspouts,one which i witnessed from my suburb,i wished i had my camera as i saw a huge very low vortice of cloud over the city yet the touch down was off to it's side and wasn't continuous,it would come down,recede,come back down over a period of half an hour to 45 minutes.What had me entranced was the great mass of frozen swirling cloud above the CBD,Aucklands cloud cover can drop as low as 500 meters and on this day i would say it was close, a rare sight for us.

        Yes i can see where flash flooding will cause us havok as we have allowed housing to be built in areas that have been deemed flood plains and some areas of our city are below sea level,it dosen't take much imagination to envision possible land slips due to an overworked storm water system not designed for extreme weather though i'm no expert.
        • Aug 21 2012: Ken:

          What I've come to realize is that just about any significant change is bad. Not because those conditions are bad per se, but because we've optimized our build world for the conditions that exist today. The same could be said for ecosystems. It's not that life could not exist in changed circumstances. But the ecosystems that exist might not be able to.
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    Aug 18 2012: I find the 2000 character limit a bit frustrating here because this is such a complex issue. I would suggest a rewording to 'world system meltdown' might resonate more with people than 'global warming'. Most people like a bit of warming, whether weather or community based. I have been reading about the belief systems that still drive the people of U.S.A. and a universal theme is the Golden Rule i.e. do unto others as you would have done to you AND always act with kindness and humility. That is where the politicians go wrong. Thinking about Elizabeth Gilbert's inspirational talk on TED recently, the 'enlightenment' moved technological progress forward and caused huge social change and population shifts. It also gave the idea that humans are superior to their environment. I think people need to realise that no-one can or should try to control the global energies of elements like wind and water because ultimately we are not superior to the planetary systems but dependant on them. Already the ideas are explored in popular fiction and films, I think of Ben Elton's book about the air we breathe becoming a commodity for sale to the highest bidder. Again Daniel Grossman how can we suppot you. I like other allegories like the one about 'Tall Poppies' which is very common in the U.K./N.Z. but not really known in U.S.A. Also like the allegory about small hills. Wearing down big mountains takes a long time and patience and persistence. It seems this time might not be available, New Orleans has already taken a big hit. What is something similar happened in another major coastal city. Some more thoughtds for the mix Want to tune in to your live discussion, is it Sunday or Monday given I am on Greenwich Mean Time time-wise. TED what about those of us in different time zones to you ?.
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    Aug 17 2012: All the sailors knew about the sea in the old days,tides and currents. To be respected, not treated like a giant sewer. I know about the world system relationships between fresh and saline water and atmospheric 'airstreams' and tidal currents. Trade routes overland are well known but maybe becoming forgotten are the trading routes by sea. As the author was saying a piecemeal funding for a global problem makes world system research so hard. Would it be possible to use satellite images to give the general public a better overview of what is going on. Perhaps using a metaphor for a structure like 'butterfly effect'. Sometimes people think it is just not worth making an effort because who are they, the individual, in the great scheme of things. Environment is not really a 'sexy' subject and little has been heard in the media since the Kyoto summit. T.V. news is always soundbite and so is cable tv as the companies only sell their packages based on sport and drama. Maybe a sponsor link up with a bottled water company or even a soft drinks company might help get the message over. Fresh water is a finite resource. We may now have landed on Mars but the bulk of the world's population are not going there anytime soon. A scientist who becomes involved with organisations like Greenpeace seems to get frozen out as a crank. Was reading elsewhere about the success of activists protesting about Exxon Mobil's activities. The planet is far more water than land. So when most people are forced to work to pay the bills and thinking time is a luxury, in what way would the author like ordinary people to hear him and support him. What about one of the major food supply chains e.g in the U.K., the supermarket chain Sainsbury's has a very good reputation for supporting charities. They are major sponsors of the Paralympics. Thinking Fair Trade movement. Thinking 'Rainbow Warrior'. Could water utility companies fund awareness projects like they do for digging wells etc.
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      Aug 21 2012: I'll never forget the first day I spent on the ocean with people who really knew the water. Where I saw "waves", they saw subtle changes in color, temperature, animal activity, changes in the wind... it was a real treat just listening to them.

      Wouldn't it be great if we could get everyone on board to change the habits that are causing these problems? I'm also interested in Dan's thoughts on raising awareness of such a complex problem... In a world where you can buy "The Lorax"-branded disposable diapers, is there any chance of using advertising to inspire change?
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    Aug 13 2012: Has anyone else reading the book been amazed by the complexity of ocean level research, and the number of factors involved? I'd always assumed the world's oceans followed "the bathtub model", where levels rise and fall pretty much equally all over the world depending on ice mass and temperatures. Which seemed difficult enough!

    I had no idea how much of an effect actual land mass has on the nearby ocean levels... it's hard for me to wrap my mind around the idea of Greenland's gravitational pull actually raising the local sea level in Scotland. And then you have to factor in things like the Earth's axis shifting, and what effect that shift would have on the "bulge" of water around the equator.... I'm struck by how very clever these researchers must be, to be able to tackle such a complex and opaque problem. Like trying to measure the apex of a swing while riding the see-saw, indeed!
  • Aug 7 2012: Aja: Here's something that you and other readers might want to think about when they picture rising sea level. It was told to me by Fred Bloetscher, a professor at Florida Atlantic University (and whose email address happens to have h2o_man in it). We tend to think of sea level as rising up onto the land like a wave of liquid covering everything. Actually, what's going to happen first is that our streets are going to fill with water, because our streets are generally the lowest places. Houses tend to be up slightly above street level. So imagine a flat coastal community with the streets gradually becoming canals. The water seeping inland via these channels. Basements might be flooding, but the front yards, at first, are fine. However, all the utilities are along and under the streets (water, sewer and some electricity and communications). These utilities become compromised. And driving through the neighborhood becomes inconvenient at best. If you look at this recent paper of Dr. Floetscher < http://www.mdpi.com/2073-4441/4/2/367/htm> you can see how this works. Figure 4 has map he made with satellite measurements of elevation showing the tendrils of water reaching into the Florida coast with a 3-foot rise of sea level.
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      Aug 13 2012: Thank you, Dan, that's fascinating... and more than a little disconcerting. Figure 4 is of the coast near Ft. Meyers, but the same image just a few hours north would include my sister-in-law's house. Which, in fact, did come close to flooding earlier this summer.

      So, then, if we're fairly certain that the oceans WILL rise enough to threaten coastal cities, the big question is... when? Do you have any sense of what sort of timeframe we might be looking at?
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    Aug 7 2012: Okay! I'm only 32% finished with the book, according to the Kindle for Mac app I'm using... I'm sure this would have been a single-sitting read for me back in the days before I had a crazy toddler running around the house. ;)

    Anyhow, some thoughts so far. I keep thinking about the plight of the Maldives, which would only need, what, about 7 feet or so of sea level rise to completely disappear. An entire country of people... where will they go? Looking at the image of Florida under 16 feet of sea level rise, though, I see that even such a catastrophic change will still leave quite a bit of land for humanity to continue on with... we won't all be clinging to oceanfront property in the Alps, as I used to imagine when I was younger. To think of entire coastlines being wiped out, though... will our great-grandchildren be told stories of the Lost City of Miami?
  • Aug 7 2012: Looking forward to the discussion!

    Kevin Doyle
    Education and Workforce Lead
    New England Clean Energy Council
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    Aug 7 2012: Great idea, Aja -- I'm in! Reading now...
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    Aug 7 2012: Why not having a summarized version of this TED book fitting within the debate header for a FREE discussion and debate about it? Or am I just stumbling over a new marketing approach?
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      Aug 7 2012: Hey Jan-Bernd, I think the point here is to try to delve a little deeper into a topic than can fit in the usual 2,000 character limit above... it's a short book, but not that short. :)
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        Aug 7 2012: Hi Aja,

        just for the balance, our 2,000 character limitation should then get extended for an appropriate review of that book...Just kidding.... :o)

        But as I don't have an e-book reader and hate to read long text on the monitor I'll be out... :o)
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    Aug 6 2012: What a great idea to have a book group! I won't join for this book, but I will try to jump in for the next.
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    Aug 6 2012: Oh whut, they got books too?

    Hmm, I should check out this ted.com more thoroughly...