Coral Fossils Suggest Sea Level Can Rise Rapidly

The New York Times

Published: April 15, 2009

Evidence from fossil coral reefs in Mexico underlines the potential for a sudden jump in sea levels because of global warming, scientists report in a new study.

The study, published in the journal Nature, suggests that a sudden rise of 6.5 feet to 10 feet occurred within a span of 50 to 100 years about 121,000 years ago, at the end of the last warm interval between ice ages.

“The potential for sustained rapid ice loss and catastrophic sea-level rise in the near future is confirmed by our discovery of sea-level instability” in that period, the authors write.

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