Scientists at the University of Arizona and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in New Jersey studied records of tidal levels along the east coast of the US and Canada.They divided the coastline into three areas: north of New York City, New York City to Cape Hatteras on the coast of North Carolina, and south of Cape Hatteras and identified a sea-level rise much higher than predicted.
Commenting on the study, Prof Rowan Sutton, climate scientist at the National Centre for Atmospheric Science stated, "In addition to long-term and gradual sea level rise, coastal communities will need to prepare for short and extreme sea level rise events and flooding." He said climate models suggest an increase in such events.
"There is strong evidence that the likelihood of such events has been greatly increased by climate change, and that we should expect more such events in the future."
"This example illustrates how individual extreme events are influenced by multiple factors - in this case climate change is likely the major cause of global rise in sea levels but regional changes in ocean circulation and wind patterns play their part."
"Sea level change is a complex phenomenon. The east coast of North America is quite close to an area of active, fast ocean currents, and so is quite sensitive to changing ocean circulation."
This sea level rise has implications for Europe and Africa as well as the US and could make European summers wetter and may influence rainfall patterns in parts of Africa and Asia.
You thought the movie 'Water World' was science fiction. Now it is a possible future