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The Analysis of Sea Levels.


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2 hours ago, RCgothic said:

Sucks to be in the oil and gas industry, really. I grew up in it. [...] Ideally we'll compensate workers and retrain them for new industries. There's going to be plenty of work building the necessary mitigating infrastructure. Not all countries are that fair. Even so almost total closure of the industry is absolutely necessary.

AFAIK Oil & Gas industry can still work in other related things, ie. Geothermal, and I don't think pipelines for chemicals as well as crude oil demands for chemical production would stop. (wonder how this will affect prices however.)

2 hours ago, RCgothic said:

The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one.

Because the needs of the one is probably included in the needs of the many.

I'd rather be selfish and save myself if it means one have to save others in the process.

2 hours ago, Rakaydos said:

I mean, noone here is making comparisons to Noah's ark- there just isnt enough ice on the planet to make that fable real.

It's already real for low-lying islands though. And even for those on 'solid' ground you might still end up having to deal with managed retreat.

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So, another question. Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

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2 hours ago, RCgothic said:

But up to 70m sea level rise could be, and that's only one of the adverse effects of rising temperatures.

We're not going to see that level of sea level rise.  That would require the melting of the ice over Eastern Antarctica and I don't think that would happen fast (in less than hundreds of years) and probably not at all with the continents in their current positions: Antarctica at the South Pole with a band of water around it and the Arctic Ocean nearly surrounded by continents.  That's the most likely final cause for what pushed the climate into the current Quaternary Ice Age.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_age#Major_ice_ages

3 minutes ago, SOXBLOX said:

So, another question. Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

Yes, there have been higher levels of CO2.  See the above Ice age article for information on that.

Go back far enough and you have to compensate for the lower Solar output.  Main Sequence stars like the Sun as they burn Hydrogen into Helium in their core contract slightly and become hotter and more radiant.   Some level of greenhouse effect is still needed now to keep Earth liveable and more was needed in the distant past.

The primary methods of removing CO2 from the atmosphere appears to be rock weathering and whenever carbon-containing deposits (from weathering and plant growth) get significantly buried such that the carbon isn't available to be freed up on the short term.  There are multiple carbon cycles in play and they vary over time.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_cycle

It seems that everything is balanced around keeping the average climate in the liquid water range.  However, there have been large deviations from this which froze a lot of Earth (see the fuller information in the Ice Age Wikipedia article above), but eventually the release of CO2 and other greenhouse gases over long enough time reversed those.

The problem right now is human activity is releasing a lot of the buried carbon in fossil fuels, far faster than any of the natural carbon cycles process.  While I don't think human activity will push Earth out of the current Quaternary Ice Age and melt all ice (because of the effects of Antarctica at the South Pole surrounded by ocean), what has happened, what will likely happen, and what will further happen if we don't work to stop releasing more CO2 are each more massive changes.  We will see significant impact from the climate change including sea level rises.  Because there's more energy in the atmosphere, the expected first order effects will tend to push climate zones out from the Equator and increase the intensities of weather.  We're already seeing the details of weather pumped up by a more energetic atmosphere and climate.

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39 minutes ago, SOXBLOX said:

So, another question. Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

20 years ago, the answer would have been yes. 

(the data doesnt include the last 5 years, but "https://xkcd.com/1732/" has some good historical data presentation for global temperatures)

The problem is that there IS mechanisms to remove CO2, and we're overloading them by putting tens of thousands of years of carbon sequestered underground, and putting it all into the air in just the last 200 years. Several of those mechanisims are starting to break under the strain, such that they arnt even doing their normal CO2 removal anymore.

Edit: CO2 may be "plant food", but it's starting to look more like the monty python "wafer thin mint" sketch.

Edited by Rakaydos
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3 hours ago, SOXBLOX said:

So, another question. Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

The earth has gone through some big changes over its history.  

https://earth.org/data_visualization/a-brief-history-of-co2/

While CO2 gets a lot of play - methane and others are also actors. 

I know some people say that we 'know' what is going on and that prediction models are accurate - but there is some cause for doubt, mostly because it is an insanely complex system and none of the individual processes are fully understood.  Despite this I believe the information and forecasting are worth paying attention to as they are the best guess as to what the potentials can be. 

My quibble aside - I look at the problem differently.  To me it does not matter whether the prediction is correct and we are heading towards a self extinction event (as the most extreme theories hold)... The question is much simpler:

* are we polluting?  (Yes)

* are there adverse consequences from that pollution? (Yes) 

* can we do better? (Yes) 

Cleaning up our home is worth doing, and doing now because we live here. 

 

(The caution I offered earlier is based on the question you asked above and other similar - when someone says 'rising CO2 will cause a runaway cycle that will kill us all' they have to explain away life on Earth thriving under much higher CO2 levels in the past... It just kinda gets too complicated and puts their assertions and proposed solutions at risk of sounding absurd) 

My method is much simpler 

Edited by JoeSchmuckatelli
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4 hours ago, Jacke said:

The primary methods of removing CO2 from the atmosphere appears to be rock weathering

And this process slows down as temperature rises (according to an 80s vintage textbook I read), which is a possible reason why Venus found itself in a runaway greenhouse while Earth did not. 

Another threat of melting Greenlandic ice sheets is that the fresh water can slow and possibly stop the Gulf Stream, making Europe much colder 

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38 minutes ago, StrandedonEarth said:

And this process slows down as temperature rises (according to an 80s vintage textbook I read), which is a possible reason why Venus found itself in a runaway greenhouse while Earth did not. 

Another threat of melting Greenlandic ice sheets is that the fresh water can slow and possibly stop the Gulf Stream, making Europe much colder 

I dont remember the gulf stream as a threat from greenland, but I know that there's an atlantic current that involves cold water from near greenland passing under the surface current in a figure 8, and that if that loop stalls out europe is going to get much colder and south america is getting much hotter.

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3 minutes ago, Rakaydos said:

I dont remember the gulf stream as a threat from greenland, but I know that there's an atlantic current that involves cold water from near greenland passing under the surface current in a figure 8, and that if that loop stalls out europe is going to get much colder and south america is getting much hotter.

Fresh water from the area will not sink and could stall the Atlantic current, which IIRC is the return current for the Gulf Stream. At least, according to an old documentary tut I forget the name of

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https://sciencenorway.no/climate-geology-ice-age/what-actually-started-the-little-ice-age/1759318

Found this interesting - not directly about what we've been discussing, but not irrelevant, either (one theory about the little ice age) 

Also this about previous ice ages 

https://sciencenorway.no/geology-ice-age/scientists-are-seeing-ice-age-beginnings-for-very-first-time/1756240

6 minutes ago, StrandedonEarth said:

Fresh water from the area will not sink and could stall the Atlantic current, which IIRC is the return current for the Gulf Stream. At least, according to an old documentary tut I forget the name of

Correct.  The GS and Atlantic Current is the primary heat transport from the warm waters of the Caribbean to Europe and a big part of why Europe from Ireland to the continent are so temperate 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_Stream

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Atlantic_Current

The fear is that a massive release of fresh water can disrupt the flow - perhaps resulting in another little ice age 

Edited by JoeSchmuckatelli
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10 hours ago, RCgothic said:

Sucks to be in the oil and gas industry, really. I grew up in it. My father worked for Shell his entire career.

The people most obviously positioned to make biofuels are the folks who already make fuels.

5 hours ago, SOXBLOX said:

So, another question. Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

Yes, there are mechanisms. Mechanisms that take many, many thousands of years. 4.5 BILLION years old, remember?

What should be concerning to us is that there are physical records of times when we know CO2 levels rose dramatically -- and these are associated with mass extinction events. Sure, some form of life survives a mass extinction event, but it's not usually the form that was dominant before the event.

Like George Carlin said, the planet will be here long after humans are gone. But as a human, I'm a little more invested in saving the humans than in consoling myself that something will be here after us.

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1 hour ago, StrandedonEarth said:

And this process [ rock weathering absorbing Carbon Dioxide ] slows down as temperature rises (according to an 80s vintage textbook I read), which is a possible reason why Venus found itself in a runaway greenhouse while Earth did not. 

The first of the likely two steps that did in Venus as the Sun warmed up over its initial life is that Venus either never had or lost its cold trap in the atmosphere.  On Earth, the atmosphere goes below freezing at 21km and that traps out most water vapour as ice.  Being under most of the ozone layer means that there's very little hard ultraviolet light to break up water into Hydrogen and Oxygen, with the Hydrogen mostly escaping.

Lacking a cold trap meant Venus slowly lost most of its water.  The water in Earth's crust and mantle changes the rocks and helps make them more pliable and able to support plate tectonics.  Plate tectonics produces most of the newly turned over rock that absorbed Carbon Dioxide.  It is thought that Venus is virtually without plate tectonics, although there's recent data that may indicate there's still be some.  But Venus going dry without plate tectonics likely allowed Carbon Dioxide to build up to crazy levels (over 88 atmospheres just of CO2) and drive up the temperature.

The continued warming of the Sun will eventually do the same to Earth, currently estimated to happen in about a billion years.  It's likely the carbon cycles, that seem to have feedbacks keeping Earth in the temperature range of liquid water, will continue and thus tend to drive down the CO2 levels until plant photosynthesis starts to fail (first plants with C3 photosynthesis, then those with C4 and CAM photosynthesis).  Sometime after this point, warming of the atmosphere will reduce and then eliminate the cold trap, allowing Earth to lose its water in much the same way as Venus likely did in the past.

 

1 hour ago, StrandedonEarth said:

Another threat of melting Greenlandic ice sheets is that the fresh water can slow and possibly stop the Gulf Stream, making Europe much colder 

The likely similar events that led to the Younger Dryas cooling  was almost certainly due to Glacial ice dams breaking and dumping the contents of Lake Agassiz and other Glacial lakes into the oceans, but its length was likely maintained by continuous meltwater.  We may be lucky and without that massive pulse, the Gulf Stream and the larger AMOC won't be disrupted.  I'd hate to get the wrong result out of this big global climate change experiment human activity is effectively running.

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1 hour ago, mikegarrison said:

What should be concerning to us is that there are physical records of times when we know CO2 levels rose dramatically -- and these are associated with mass extinction events. Sure, some form of life survives a mass extinction event, but it's not usually the form that was dominant before the event.

The change in CO2 levels was likely sometimes a side effect of the major factor in Extinction events: greatly increased volcanism  from Flood basaltsExamples including the Siberian Traps, likely the main factor in the Permian–Triassic extinction event (the biggest one) and the Deccan Traps, likely a major factor in the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, which likely needed more than a whoping big impact to produce all of its effects.

Changes in CO2 levels also go along with changes in sea levels.  Extreme high or low sea levels are also a big extinction cause for most sea life.

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1 hour ago, Jacke said:

The change in CO2 levels was likely sometimes a side effect of the major factor in Extinction events: greatly increased volcanism  from Flood basaltsExamples including the Siberian Traps, likely the main factor in the Permian–Triassic extinction event (the biggest one) and the Deccan Traps, likely a major factor in the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, which likely needed more than a whoping big impact to produce all of its effects.

Changes in CO2 levels also go along with changes in sea levels.  Extreme high or low sea levels are also a big extinction cause for most sea life.

Yeah, but it's not clear if it was the basalt floods that caused the extinctions or the changes in the atmosphere that caused the extinctions. Or (quite probably) both.

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10 hours ago, JoeSchmuckatelli said:

* are we polluting?  (Yes)

* are there adverse consequences from that pollution? (Yes) 

* can we do better? (Yes) 

Cleaning up our home is worth doing, and doing now because we live here. 

I agree. I don't care for the alarmism, either. I realize that the people who propagate it do believe that the worst case will happen. I don't.

I also notice that the people raising the alarm are offering solutions which are often, IMHO, Bad Ideas™. These Bad Ideas™ universally involve giving fallible and usually (by nature) self-centered human beings unreasonable amounts of authority. Typically, this reminds me of Grandpa Palpatine getting his "emergency powers", or Boromir asking for the One Ring. 

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15 hours ago, SOXBLOX said:

So, another question. Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

That usually comes up as an argument. “CO2 levels have been that high in the past, so why worry

  • because it took millions of years to go down
  • because it resulted in a climate that was seriously unpleasant
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18 hours ago, SOXBLOX said:

Are there times in Earth's history when CO2 levels were higher than today? Because if there are, it means there is some mechanism that can remove the CO2, even at higher averages.

Yes, when the Earth was covered in tropical forest and only reptiles survive, and when the surface was lava.

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4 hours ago, SOXBLOX said:

I agree. I don't care for the alarmism, either. I realize that the people who propagate it do believe that the worst case will happen. I don't.

I also notice that the people raising the alarm are offering solutions which are often, IMHO, Bad Ideas™. These Bad Ideas™ universally involve giving fallible and usually (by nature) self-centered human beings unreasonable amounts of authority. Typically, this reminds me of Grandpa Palpatine getting his "emergency powers", or Boromir asking for the One Ring. 

Err... I'm not sure where you heard that, but no one has suggested creating an all powerful anti-climate change committee that can override democratic institutions. In any case, such people are definitely a minority.

The following is my personal opinion and does not reflect that of those in favor of "drastic" action against climate change-

In fact, one might argue that it is better to accept the damage "drastic" solutions may cause and implement them now while they can be monitored by democratic states, instead of continuing arguing until one side believes "we're at 11:59" and comes to the conclusion taking up arms is the only way to save the planet. But again, such "drastic" action would be implemented in a democratic manner- that is, only if it gets voted for- and there would be no awarding of emergency powers or creation of the position of Climate Fuhrer or anything. I have not seen any climate activists advocate for a need for literal authoritarian or totalitarian action to stop climate change.

Now, there are some who claim that action taken against climate change is "authoritarian", but just as there are alarmists on the side of "proponents" of climate change, there are alarmists on the side denialists as well. It should be noted those claiming proposed action against climate change is authoritarian are usually discussing policies that need to be voted on to come into effect- thus not authoritarian- and are using emotion, the thing you and @JoeSchmuckatelli are (in your opinion you both have a right to) opposed to in the discussion on climate change, to bring about the opposite effect- no action against climate change, which one could argue is equally authoritarian- the malicious prevention of change despite its support by a majority*.

It should be noted that the abolishment of slavery and other actions by Abraham Lincoln were viewed as dictatorial at the time. And indeed some who relied on slave labor for their profit and livelihood likely lost it all. But Abraham Lincoln was not a dictator and the abolishment of slavery was a good thing.

I say all of this because your arguments resemble the "if people don't 100% agree on it, it must be authoritarianism" mentality that is prevalent in many issues today, which in reality is just the politicians on one side of the issue trying to trick people into opposing a policy not on its details, but on supposed democratic principle- in other words, the opposite of what you claim I and others may be "falling for": instead of us being tricked by alarmists into "extreme" and "unnecessary" action, you may be influenced by quasi-alarmist rhetoric on the other end (not denialists- those simply opposed to climate change who do acknowledge its existence but do not believe its severity); that "drastic" action, or major action, is automatically somehow destructive in morality and ethics due to its extreme nature.

*A hypothetical majority of course.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

I would like to write a disclaimer. I am simply reading posts and attempting to interpret their contents. We are discussing what we believe should be done about climate change- our opinions, not each other- and if I have made a statement you find to be incorrect in regards to your opinions, it is not meant personally or as an insult- I have done my best to interpret the text of your posts and have made a mistake. Please do correct me. In addition, what I have written- and what I write in general- are not "commands". I am offering my opinion on your opinion, but I have no intention of trying to change yours in a hostile manner. I am simply offering ideas (some "stand alone", and some ideas on your ideas) to be debated and discussed.

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@SunlitZelkova - your caution to me about tone is noted - thanks!

As mentioned previously - I fully support voluntary changes in habits towards the goal of reducing the pollution of the planet.  Like someone claiming to be vegan for the purpose of reducing cow farts, or living off the grid and biking everywhere because of coal and petrochemical exhaust in electrical generation.  While that's a blatant ad absurdum example a small few do make those choices.  What I really like to see is how a sufficient number of people are taking the issue seriously enough to create broad markets for things that used to be niche - like electric vehicles, home solar, wind farms and a growing acceptance for nuclear power, to name a few.  

It's these broad demands for less polluting products that are having a real impact on the choices of governments and industry. 

FWIW - I have not had the opportunity, here, to attack the extreme arguments of the deniers... Because we haven't seen any. 

Mostly we have people who generally agree on the problem, yet quibble about the interpretation of the data and the degree of response required. 

Edited by JoeSchmuckatelli
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Notwithstanding that sometimes the cure is worse than the disease, sometimes the disease is so bad some cure has to be done.  It's about finding the right collection of cures.

More has to be done about climate change, because it is and will hurt and eventually kill people, either directly via its effects or countries reacting.  There's a reasons that the the United States DoD has been planning for conflict from climate change for a long time.

Voluntary efforts ain't going to be enough, nor will they be equitable.  It's going to require regulation that can't be fiddled.  That means measures supported by economists (and the newspaper the Economist): one of them is simple appropriate carbon taxes.  Emphasis on simple and appropriate to make the cure sufficient with as little blowback as possible.  You want to reduce the behaviour, make it more expensive.

There's others.  Force burning of coal to be under the same regulations for release of radioactive material as the nuclear industry.  Right now coal burning  is the biggest source of radioactive material, only exceeded in some places by Radon leaking from the ground.  That radioactivity is killing people right now along with the pollution and Carbon Dioxide release issues.

And these policies need to be widely adopted to prevent jurisdiction shopping.

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2 hours ago, JoeSchmuckatelli said:

FWIW - I have not had the opportunity, here, to attack the extreme arguments of the deniers... Because we haven't seen any. 

Um, we saw someone who claimed that all data that shows sea level rise is faked. That's pretty damn "extreme".

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20 minutes ago, mikegarrison said:

Um, we saw someone who claimed that all data that shows sea level rise is faked. That's pretty damn "extreme".

And several people addressed it.  

FWIW - I'm not sure he claimed the data was faked, but rather that the interpretation was loose "... statistical noise floor..." etc. (which was also addressed/refuted ).  Several folks offered data and sources - but he declined to do so and bowed out of the discussion... 

So it was time to move on. 

Edited by JoeSchmuckatelli
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2 hours ago, Jacke said:

You want to reduce the behaviour, make it more expensive.

Yup! And take that money and fix the problem (invest in renewables/cleaner-air technologies)

 

It ain't sexy, it ain't easy, but it will work if implemented correctly at a wide enough scale for long enough. Idk if we have enough time to stave off the "lesser" problems, like crazy weather, but it will prevent the ultimate endgame. Unless of course we are totally stupid and don't even do the minimal work, and just go for those $. 

 

Of course the "lesser" problems can be pretty bad and could result in worse stresses on humanity in the mean time.

 

1 hour ago, mikegarrison said:

Um, we saw someone who claimed that all data that shows sea level rise is faked. That's pretty damn "extreme".

That person bailed a while back. I also don't like the idea of "attack the extreme arguments of deniers" because that's like asking to get in a fight with a brick wall. Sure if might be fun at first, but lets be serious it ain't gonna crumble. 

 

2 hours ago, Jacke said:

Right now coal burning  is the biggest source of radioactive material, only exceeded in some places by Radon leaking from the ground.  That radioactivity is killing people right now along with the pollution and Carbon Dioxide release issues.

Speaking of Radioactivity, has any country seriously re-considered re-implementing (or already has) nuclear power? I know it was more of the rage a few decades ago, but idk where it sits now. Last I checked nuclear isn't really renewable, but it can be clean when done correctly and provide a solid bridge for renewable power in the mean time, and for a long time at that.

 

Until 10 years from now we get the fusion ;D

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12 hours ago, SunlitZelkova said:

Err... I'm not sure where you heard that, but no one has suggested creating an all powerful anti-climate change committee that can override democratic institutions. In any case, such people are definitely a minority.

I know no one here suggested that, for sure. This forum is quite rational. But I left the definition of "unreasonable amounts of authority" intentionally vague.

Personally, I think we should err on the side of the smallest incursion into natural rights as possible, and I'm sure you all will agree. There have got to be better ways than more regulations.

12 hours ago, SunlitZelkova said:

Now, there are some who claim that action taken against climate change is "authoritarian", but just as there are alarmists on the side of "proponents" of climate change, there are alarmists on the side denialists as well. It should be noted those claiming proposed action against climate change is authoritarian are usually discussing policies that need to be voted on to come into effect- thus not authoritarian- and are using emotion, the thing you and @JoeSchmuckatelli are (in your opinion you both have a right to) opposed to in the discussion on climate change, to bring about the opposite effect- no action against climate change, which one could argue is equally authoritarian- the malicious prevention of change despite its support by a majority*.

Now, here is where I start to disagree. It's not that you're wrong outright, or that I think you're evil, or whatever, but I do see some unspoken assumptions about what's right and what's wrong that I can't quite agree with.

I believe that just because a majority wants something doesn't mean it's right. I believe there are limits no majority has a right to cross, no matter how small the minority. I can agree with and work to solve the issue of climate change as long as we don't cross those lines. But if we do, I have to oppose it.

I don't know. Maybe you believe this, too, and I just misread? If I did, my apologies.

1 hour ago, RCgothic said:

It takes about 5 years to build an established design of nuclear plant with an established industry. See France, world leader in clean energy.

I hope we start building more fission plants here in the US; it would be super beneficial, and it wouldn't take much. People just need to know that it's not as dangerous as they think...

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59 minutes ago, SOXBLOX said:

Personally, I think we should err on the side of the smallest incursion into natural rights as possible, and I'm sure you all will agree.

There are no "natural rights". All rights are a social construct.

That being said, this has nothing to do with the science of sea levels. You are starting to address policy decisions.

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