North Miami buildings are seen near the ocean. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
On a warming Earth, seas inevitably rise, as ice on land melts and makes its way to the ocean. And not only that — the ocean itself swells, because warm water expands. We already know this is happening — according to NASA, seas are currently rising at a rate of 3.5 millimeters per year, which converts to about 1.4 inches per decade.
However, scientists have long expected that the story should be even worse than this. Predictions suggest that seas should not only rise, but that the rise should accelerate, meaning that the annual rate of rise should itself increase over time. That’s because the great ice sheets, Greenland and Antarctica, should lose more and more mass, and the heat in the ocean should also increase.
The problem, or even mystery, is that scientists haven’t seen…
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