Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Sea level rise threatens the Sundarbans

Countercurrents.org: The rise in sea levels around the Sundarbans delta is a cause of concern, said Dr Rajendra K. Pachauri, chairperson of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Director-General of TERI (Tata Energy and Resources Institute).

“We have to be worried about the rise in sea levels in Sundarbans,” Pachauri told newspersons on the sidelines of a session organized by the Indian Science Congress in Kolkata on January 6, 2013. Researchers of the School of Oceanographic Studies, Jadavpur University, estimate that sea levels rose from 3.14 millimeters annually (recorded until the year 2,000) to about 8 mm by 2010.

The delta consists of 102 low-lying islands of which 48 are inhabited.  Nearly four million people in the Sundarbans coexist with 26 species of true mangroves, 234 species of birds and 47 species of mammals, including the Royal Bengal tiger.

Experts point out that the islands and its ecosystem, including the community, are severely stressed over availability of natural resources and are highly vulnerable to changes in climate....

The Sundarbans in 2008, a few months after Cyclone Sidr, shot by joiseyshowaa, Wikimedia Commons via Flickr, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license

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