Thursday, July 30, 2015

Washington DC is sinking into the sea through a process of “forebulge collapse”

JUL 30, 2015 6 Kevin Sanders

Geologists say Washington DC is gradually sinking into the sea through a process known as “forebulge collapse.” This means the government of the United States is sitting on a waterbed that is heaving and could gradually collapse over the next century unless active preparations are put in place.

Geologists say this has nothing to do with unchecked climate change or excessive underwater flows, but it has all to do with forebulge collapse which refers to the geological ups and downs that have been occurring unnoticed since the last ice age. Scientists further noted that before the last 20,000 years, a mile-high ice sheet stretched very far south and extended up to Long Island, and its sheer weight remains under the ground of Washington DC today.

“It’s a bit like sitting on one side of a water bed filled with very thick honey,” Ben DeJong, the lead author on the new study, said. “The other side goes up. But when you stand, the bulge comes down again.”

This study was conducted by geologists from the University of Vermont, the US Geological Survey, and other research organizations; and their findings were published in GSA Today – a journal of the Geological Society of America.

DeJong and his colleagues drilled holes in the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, close to Washington, and then analyzed the layers of sediments – comparing these with computer models and satellite scans of the region. They project that Washington will drop by six or more inches over a century to this time, and this will not only threaten sea level rise, but it will also compromise national monuments and military installations in the state.

“Right now is the time to start making preparations,” DeJong said. “Six extra inches of water really matters in this part of the world.”

The Intergovenmental Panel on Climate Change had already predicted that global sea levels would rise by at least a foot by 2100, and even added that this has even occurred by 1.8 millimeters per year worldwide within the last century.

“It’s ironic that the nation’s capital–the place least responsive to the dangers of climate change–is sitting in one of the worst spots it could be in terms of this land subsidence,” Paul Bierman, a UVM geologist told Science Daily. “Will the Congress just sit there with their feet getting ever wetter? What’s next, forebulge denial?


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