The sea level around America's coast has risen .4 inches per year around the Gulf States and the Southeast area in general since 2010, thanks to climate change.
These days, movies like the upcoming Asteroid City have many people imagining how our world would be altered by everything from asteroids to aliens. However, as fun as these Hollywood movies can be, the biggest threat currently facing the world remains climate change. A recent study published in Nature Communications reveals that the sea level has risen .4 inches per year around the Gulf States and the Southeast area in general since 2010.
To begin with, scientists looked at satellite and field measurements to examine how much the sea level had risen between 1900 and 2021. And one of the more alarming things that they noticed is that thanks to climate change, the sea level has dramatically risen to record rates in the last 12 years alone. According to the scientists involved, the rate at which the ocean has risen in the recent past is “unprecedented in at least 120 years.”
Unless you personally keep track of climate change over time, the idea that the ocean has been rising for a little less than half an inch a year since 2010 might not seem like a big deal. For context, though, the sea level had previously been rising at an average of .14 inches per year since the 1990s. Things have gotten nearly three times worse in a very short span of time, which means things are about to get very bad for people in the Gulf and in the Southeast.
One of the counterarguments that climate change deniers like to trot out is that everything from the global temperature to the sea level is bound to change naturally over time and that we can’t necessarily blame what is happening on humanity. But these researchers were able to rule out other potential factors on the sea level rising (such as ice-mass loss and air pressure changes), concluding that the unprecedented rise we are seeing is a largely man-made catastrophe made worse at times by the natural variability of the ocean.
And we are already seeing some of the effects that climate change is having on states such as Texas and Louisiana. For example, the majority of the Texas coast is eroding at a rate of 6 feet per year, and Louisiana lost 2,000 square miles to erosion between 1932 and 2016. That’s bigger than the state of Rhode Island, and once the rising sea levels begin affecting more coastal properties in places like Florida, we may see whether the old clap back at Ben Shapiro is true and owners can sell their (literally) underwater homes to Aquaman.
Sooner rather than later, climate change could cause a real estate crisis for property owners throughout the Gulf and Southeast areas, but it’s not too late for voters and politicians to rally together and fight back against this. With swift intervention and proper government regulation, we could fight back against climate change and leave a better world for our children. But since that would require politicians and the wealthy people who control them to choose people over profit, we might just be better off hoping one of those UFOs land and the aliens take over the planet…honestly, could they really do a worse job than us?