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The Irish Times Magazine - - NEWS - JOAN SCALES

Joan Scales on sites un­der threat

There is an el­e­ment in all of us of want­ing to be the first or last to see some­thing. Here are five des­ti­na­tions we should be think­ing of see­ing – be­fore cli­mate change takes them away. Venice The great Ital­ian city has been un­der threat from the sea for years and has suf­fered mas­sive flood­ing in the past. Sci­en­tists pre­dict that the sea is likely to rise by five feet by the end of this cen­tury leav­ing La Serenis­sima un­der wa­ter. The Mal­dives The is­land na­tion in the In­dian Ocean is com­posed of 26 atolls, which con­tain more than 1,000 is­lands, many of which are barely 2ms above sea level. These beau­ti­ful is­lands, pop­u­lar with hon­ey­moon­ers, are threat­ened by ris­ing sea lev­els. but the Mal­di­vians are work­ing on a plan: they plan to build sea- walls, for­tify the is­lands most in dan­ger and even build new is­lands so that peo­ple can re­lo­cate to safety. But will it be enough? The Dead Sea The his­toric salt lake is shrink­ing by up to 5cm per year and the level is fall­ing up to a me­tre a year. What were once sea­side re­sorts are now more than a kilo­me­tre from the shores. It is the low­est point on Earth – some 400m be­low sea level. Glaciers of Europe The glaciers of Europe are shrink­ing, with Aus­tria and Euro­pean Alps be­ing the worst hit. If you wanted to go glacier ski­ing, book your trip now. Great Bar­rier Reef The Great Bar­rier Reef was af­fected by ma­jor bleach­ing events in 2016 and 2017, with a 1,500km stretch dev­as­tated. Bleach­ing is a re­sult of ris­ing sea tem­per­a­tures.

js­cales@ irish­times. com

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