[GWSG] FL slr report; FL slr conference; planners muzzled; C increase higher than thought; Rio+20+3

Tilley, Al atilley at unf.edu
Sun Jun 24 10:25:32 EDT 2012

1.  The Florida Oceans and Coastal Council has released a report on Climate Change and Sea Level Rise in Florida.  It recognizes the impending danger for Florida’s coastal communities and to such inland features as the Biscayne Aquifer.  Florida’s sea level rise can be considered as equivalent to the global sea level rise, and the current rise is 80% faster than the IPCC’s best estimate in the last AR. (p.3).  In my view the report is conservative in its projections but responsible in conveying a warning which is difficult to contradict on rational grounds.  It does not sufficiently address the problem posed by people displaced by sea level rise nor does it represent the studies of slr based on the historical record, which generally double the projections of the models.  http://www.floridaoceanscouncil.org/reports/Climate_Change_and_Sea_Level_Rise.pdf

2.  Florida Atlantic U sponsored a conference on sea level rise last week at which the progressive inundation of Florida south of Lake Okeechobee was discussed.  Margo Moehring attended and I look forward to a report.  http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/06/22/2864586/rising-seas-mean-shrinking-south.html

3.  The North Carolina bill to restrict studies of sea level rise to current rates of increase did not pass.  http://hamptonroads.com/2012/06/nc-lawmakers-pass-sealevel-bill-call-study  The NC legislature is said in other news stories not to have given up on the issue.  Two weeks ago at a conference I was told by planners from NC and SC that their states have asked them to do their work without reference to sea level rise or climate change.  VA planners are said to be working in the same foolish predicament.

4.  In 2010 global carbon emissions were up 48% from a 1992 base according to a new analysis by the Guardian.  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/jun/21/global-carbon-emissions-record

5.  Rio+20 produced some improvements in ocean management and little else.  It did, however, demonstrate global concern and showcase some efforts toward emissions controls.  http://e360.yale.edu/digest/rio_20_summit_ends_with_little_faith_in_government_solutions/3521/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+YaleEnvironment360+%28Yale+Environment+360%29  On the agreements regarding oceans:  http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/06/120622-rio-20-oceans/  The US is said by George Monbiot to have played a disappointing role in the agreement process.  We apparently worked to alter “sustainable development” to “sustainable growth” and to decouple economic growth from the use of natural resources.  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2012/jun/22/rio-20-earth-summit-brazil  The next significant UN meeting will be in 2015.  By then governments are to have agreed to sustainability goals.  Something will need to happen to moderate the corporate and political pressures now preventing action for anything significant to happen in 2015.  We should imagine how we might bring about that moderation.   http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-18561223
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