Downtown Areas Could Be Ocean-Front Property - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Downtown Areas Could Be Ocean-Front Property

Published December 5, 2011

Certain parts of what is now downtown Reykjavík could become submerged by the sea, should climate change trends continue.
Following up on a report released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which spawned speculation as to what post-glacial-melt Iceland might look like, an Icelandic company has drawn up what the shoreline around Reykjavík might look like in such conditions.
DV reports that Iceland could be completely devoid of glaciers within as little as 200 years. The last time this was the case was some 6,000 to 8,000 years ago. Melting glaciers around the world could raise sea levels around Iceland by as much as six metres.
As can be seen in the above linked article – with red areas indicating new areas of the sea – much of downtown Reykjavík would be flooded. This includes most of the shore, a great swath of downtown itself, nearly half of Seltjarnarnes, and most of Álftanes.
Reykjavík wouldn’t be the only town in trouble, though. Much of Akureyri and almost all of Ísafjörður would be underwater as well.
The conditions for rising sea levels this high could occur within the next century. Whether or not such conditions can be reversed, only time will tell.


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