Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Why is Bangkok Going Underwater?

The Associated Press article is accompanied by an image of a buddist monk carefully traversing a thin strip of wooden planking atop a dam, surrounded by the sea as the author proclaims that Bangkok is being submerged by rising seas. Soon, this could be the world, the story warns.

Bangkok is one of 13 of the world's largest 20 cities at risk of being swamped as sea levels rise in coming decades, according to warnings at the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change held here.

"This is what the future will look like in many places around the world," says Lisa Schipper, an American researcher on global warming, while visiting the temple. "Here is a living study in environmental change."

Environmental change, not climate change. The environment is changing. Bangkok is sinking. Some areas of Bangkok are already below sea level and its highest point is only 3.5 to 5 feet above sea level. The city sits on clay, clay that is being compacted by the haphazard water management of the bustling city and the fact that the natural drainage canals were filled in during the 1950s to make roads. Bangkok is sinking at a rate of 4 inches per year.

The article does admit that the sea level rise in Bangkok is about .1 inches per year, the same as the global average. As we have already discussed in a previous article, this rise is not above the normal expected increase. Sea levels have been rising since the last ice age, and there has not been any acceleration in that rate since the 1950s.

The sea level rise that they say will finally do Bangkok in is the "projected" rise of the IPCC, not any sea level rise that has been observed in reality. Regardless of sea level, Bangkok is sinking, its future depends on land management and finding new ways of draining the floods from monsoons and combatting the compacting the unstable clay of its foundation.

This fact doesn't stop oceanographer Anond Snidvongs from stating "There is no one single solution to respond to climate change", when it is clearly a change in the environment and not the climate that is leading Bangkok to disaster.

This AP article, and many like it appear often. Warnings of vast floods as a result of global warming, all with headlines and content designed to whip up fear and frenzy over something that has not happened and in fact, there is no evidence to assume will happen. Projections based solely on unproven computer models and speculation.

To read the response of two dozen scientists to the AP scare story “Rising Seas Likely to Flood U.S. History” go to this link.


Anonymous said...

laddawan jirasatayaporn 5037880 shev/m GRID 515

Now, we all have a big problem like Global warming in thailand , bangkok has higher temperature and the locating of bangkok lower than sea level. its cause of human activities in city. The climate effect to temperature and sea level make flood problem. now Global warming have an affect to bangkok Going Underwater. This article,forecast by computer models and speculation for planing flood problem in the futur on bangkok.

thailand has uncertainly temperature and flood problem because of human activities especially in bangkok the capital city in thailand . I hope that not bangkok Going Underwater and the environment ofbangkok will vary to slowly. I belie bangkok never Going Underwater

viagra online said...

I have not idea that this was happening in Bangkok, but is problem that they definitely have to resolve as soon as possible.

What are the effects of global warming? said...

Thanks for the post. When I was backpacking across China I noticed similar phenomenons and overheard some politicians discuss it. This is a very urgent matter to be dealt with.