Major cities threatened by sea level rise. The cities indicated are under threat of even a small sea level rise (of 1.6 foot/49 cm) compared to the level in 2010.
Capping global warming at 1.5 ° C would halve the sea level rise that the world will face from melting ice shlakes and glaciers this century, according to the study.
The analysis found melt ice could bring sea-level rise down from a central forecast of 25 cm to 2100 if only the current commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions was met, to 13 cm if the rising temperatures were brought down to 1.5 C.
Unless global warming emissions are reduced rapidly to meet the targets set out in the Paris climate accord, by 2060 the world will be facing a “precipitous leap” in the pace of Antarctic ice loss, fueling sea-level rise and placing coastal towns more at risk, the study says.
Melting land ice, as well as the world’s Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets and glaciers, have killed about half of sea level rise since 1993, with the other half from the oceans which tend to widen as they warms.
Even if this is not expected soon, even a slight increase of ice loss at global sea levels would be felt.
Through the Paris climate agreement, countries have committed to hold global warming to ‘well below’ 2C above preindustrial levels and to seek to limit it to 1.5 C to prevent the worst impacts on climate change.