It might be tough to visualize global warming. How can you know it's truly occurring if you're not directly endangered by increasing sea levels, water scarcity, or wildfires?
Between now and 2030, a lot may happen. We might create flood defenses, modify our cities, and, ideally, take substantial measures to limit global warming if the COP26 negotiations proceed as planned. But if none of that occurs, here are the probable consequences: nine cities that might be completely (or partially) submerged within a decade.
Amsterdam, the Netherlands
The cities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and The Hague are low, flat, and near to the North Sea. The Dutch are well-known for their flood defenses, and based on these sea-level estimates, it appears that the country's system of dikes, dams, barriers, levees, and floodgates will become even more important in the coming years.
Basra, Iraq's primary port city, is located on the Shatt al-Arab, a massive and broad river that flows into the Persian Gulf. Basra and its surrounding territories are especially vulnerable to sea-level rise due to its extensive network of canals and streams, as well as nearby wetlands. Basra already has a high rate of waterborne infections, so additional floods pose even more danger.
New Orleans, USA
Rising sea levels would cause a threat to New Orleans, but even with them, the devastation appears to be terrible. The wildlife preserves in Biloxi and Jean Lafitte appear to be particularly dangerous.
The Venetian city has previously been flooded, and climate change is expected to increase the frequency of high tides that submerge it. Venice, like New Orleans, has flood-defence systems in place, but if the situation develops, they will become more difficult (and expensive) to maintain.
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Ho Chi Minh City's core is unlikely to be submerged by 2030, but it will almost surely be more vulnerable to flooding and tropical storms.
Much of West Bengal has prospered for generations because of its rich topography. Like Ho Chi Minh City, Kolkata may struggle during the rainy season since rainfall has less area to flow off onto.
Bangkok may be the city worst harmed by global warming. The Thai capital is barely 1.5 meters above sea level and, like Venice, is sinking (although at a considerably quicker rate — by two to three centimeters every year). However, Bangkok is constructed on very hard clay soil, making it even more prone to flooding. Most of the coastline between the Tha Kham and Samut Prakan regions, as well as its main airport, Suvarnabhumi International, might be underwater by 2030.
For generations, the capital of Guyana, Georgetown, has relied on sea walls — or, more precisely, one massive, 280-mile-long sea wall — for storm protection. This is due to the fact that the majority of the shoreline is between 0.5 and one meter below high tide. The coast is home to 90 percent of Guyana's inhabitants, and as you can see, the government would need to significantly strengthen its sea wall if Georgetown's core regions are to avoid major devastation.
Savannah, Georgia, is located in a hurricane hotspot, yet even if no catastrophic weather events occur, the old city might be eaten up by the sea on all sides. The Savannah River in the north and the Ogeechee River in the south might both flow into the neighbouring marshes, which means that when storms and flash floods reach the city, the city will be flooded.