- The Washington Times
Sunday, December 5, 2021

OPINION:

Images that validate preconceived notions are comforting, but some depictions and the beliefs they bolster can be misleading. That sea levels are rising, and threatening island nations across the planet is a widely held tenet of the climate change movement. Actual scientific data disputes the view, though. Whether the intentions of climate alarmists are noble or something less, attempts to dial down the planet’s thermostat must be grounded in fact, not fiction.

The recently concluded United Nations COP26 climate change conference in Scotland featured the image of Tuvalu Foreign Minister Simon Kofe standing knee-deep in the sea, urging drastic climate mitigation to prevent his atoll nation from disappearing beneath the waves: “We will not stand idly by as the water rises around us. We are not just talking in Tuvalu, we are mobilizing collective action at home, in our region, and on the international stage to secure our future.”


It was a gripping illustration of the supposed watery devastation caused by human-generated greenhouses gases. It was nevertheless misleading. Tuvalu, located in the South Pacific, is gaining, not losing ground.

A 2018 University of Auckland research paper published in the journal Nature employed aerial photography and satellite imagery to study changes in shorelines of Tuvalu’s 101 islands over 40 years. “Surprisingly, we show that all islands have changed and that the dominant mode of change has been island expansion, which has increased the land area of the nation,” the researchers concluded.

Tuvaluan officials have disputed the findings, which concluded the islands have grown by 2.9 percent, but photos — unlike politicians – don’t lie. Moreover, U.S. climate activists who control President Biden’s “green” agenda would blanch at the knowledge that coastlines have been expanding not just in Tuvalu but globally.

A new 2021 study published in the Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing used Landsat satellite images to map coastline changes between 60 degrees North Latitude and 50 degrees South Latitude from 1984 to 2019. “In general, we found that accretion is the dominant trend over erosion across the world,” the authors write.

Asia’s coastline has been expanding the fastest, at 0.64 meters per year, followed by Europe at 0.45, Africa at 0.31, and Australia at 0.10. South America’s has remained unchanged. Only North America has experienced a decrease, with its coastline shrinking by 0.29 meters per year.

While Mr. Biden might be disturbed by erosion near his Delaware beach house, but such concerns did not prevent Barack Obama from nabbing his own beachfront estate up the East Coast on Martha’s Vineyard. Neither did climate-change hand-wringing dissuade House Speaker Nancy Pelosi from dropping $25 million for an oceanside mansion in Florida.

It is natural for human beings to revere the majesty of their surroundings and take steps to preserve its beauty. Climate alarmists who promote extreme measures to mitigate supposed environmental damage that isn’t real, though, risk harming both their credibility and cause.


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