Tuesday, April 1, 2008

'Gateway of India will be under water by 2100'


The Gateway of India will be wiped off the Mumbai skyline. Bhelpuri at Chowpatty will become the stuff of grandmother's tales. No flights will take off from Chhatrapati Shivaji airport. No couple will canoodle at the Marine Drive promenade and even heirs to the bungalow of Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan will not be able to resist being evicted from their home. Ninety-two years from now, all these landmarks of Mumbai will be underwater. That's the apocalypse scenario drawn up in a report titled 'Climate Migrants in South Asia: Estimates and Solutions' that has been commissioned by Greenpeace, a non-government organization. Prepared by climate expert and professor from the humanities department of IIT Chennai, Sudhir Chella Rajan, the report says that a potential increase in temperatures by 4 to 5 degrees due to greenhouse emissions at the current rate would mean a corresponding rise in sea levels of up to five metres by 2100. This, in turn, would imply that approximately 50 million Indians would be rendered homeless and become 'climate migrants'. "The low elevation coastal zone (LECZ), which comprises the coastal region that is less than 10 metres above average sea level, is obviously at direct risk. Even prime commercial properties like the Backbay complex and the Bandra-Kurla complex fall into this category. This means that it's not just the average Koli who will be affected but even Mannat (superstar SRK's Bandra Bandstand bungalow) would be on the wrong side of the coastline once the sea level rises," said Greenpeace activist Shweta Ganesh Kumar. Greenpeace envisages that human migration 92 years hence would be equivalent to 10 times the movement seen during Partition. "This means that even the limited space in your Virar-Churchgate local will be affected," she added. However, Rakesh Kumar from the National Environment Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) felt the figures in the Greenpeace study seemed exaggerated. "This can create a scare in the minds of the people. According to estimates of the intergovernmental panel of climate change (IPCC), the rise in sea levels by 2011 is estimated at one metre. There will be submersion, but only in the low-lying areas. At most, the foundations of buildings near the shore may be weakened due to saline formation," said Kumar. Greenpeace activists, however, are on a mission to raise awareness about the impending doom. Around 40 Greenpeace activists or 'Blue Busters' sporting symbolic blue raincoats hit the city streets on Sunday. Blue cautionary signs, saying 'Climate Change Zone Ahead' with illustrations of drowning individuals bearing a distinct resemblance to traditional traffic signs, were put up along the Bandra Kurla Complex and other areas. Greenpeace Climate and Energy campaigner Brikesh Singh said, "We want to alert Mumbaikars to the blue future they have in store if steps are not taken to fight global warming. If we don't act now, our city of dreams will be caught up in a never-ending nightmare, and we are the last generation that can prevent this from happening." The 'Blue Alert' signs were part of a Greenpeace campaign launched in Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Kochi, Panaji and Puri. "The campaign aims at bringing home the reality of climate change to the common man and empowering people to force their MPs to speak out about the issue of climate change," said Singh. Greenpeace activists will slap token 'eviction-warning' notices on the doors of structures that may be affected. These include the homes of actors Shah Rukh Khan, Rekha and Farhan Akhtar.

13 Comments:

At April 1, 2008 at 9:45 AM, Blogger Nessa said...

Will the token eviction notices be nmade of paper?

Everyone everywhere should become more aware of their effect on the world.

 
At April 1, 2008 at 10:19 AM, Blogger di.di said...

that's scary, man....we should make an effort to tackle climate change problem

 
At April 1, 2008 at 10:59 PM, Blogger Azer Mantessa said...

a meter higher in 2011 is scary enough. it is predicted that 100 years from now, the water level shall rise another 30 meter.

wonder how malaysia will look like ... no map has been drawn yet.

thanks for the posting. it is a worthwhile and important reading.

 
At April 2, 2008 at 1:11 PM, Blogger (¯`•._.•[Raaji]•._.•´¯) said...

wow... this is NEWS!
I did not know that. It is easier to cast a blind eye on global warming.. since we are not effected by it... yet!

 
At April 4, 2008 at 2:35 PM, Blogger c e e d y said...

Yeah read the news and am sad....

Mera pyara mumbai

 
At April 5, 2008 at 11:25 AM, Blogger GMG said...

Hi Raghu! Interesting post! Of course, one may think that Greenpeace has not always been accurate on their views, but everybody shouls pay some attention to global warming...
Thanks for your comments at Blogtrotter, where I’m still strolling around Bilbao. Look forward to reading you back there!
Have a great weekend!
Gil

 
At April 7, 2008 at 6:48 PM, Blogger Cynthia said...

This is really frightening.

 
At April 8, 2008 at 6:11 PM, Blogger Mel Avila Alarilla said...

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At April 8, 2008 at 10:56 PM, Blogger Macadamia The Nut said...

I hope more and more people understand the significance of global warming. For most its still a myth.

 
At April 9, 2008 at 5:36 AM, Blogger kimmy said...

I've traveled to Venice several times and scientists say the same thing about that city too. With global warming and the rise of the ocean, it won't be long till the water levels rise there too.

Kimmy

 
At April 9, 2008 at 7:24 AM, Blogger Sandpiper said...

Global warming is very scary stuff. In order to end previous Ice Ages, we've obviously had other warming periods, but never has man had such technology to predict or communicate before - or to contribute to it. An interesting post.

(Thanks for visiting my blog today.)

 
At April 9, 2008 at 9:11 AM, Blogger adam brown said...

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At April 10, 2008 at 6:34 AM, Blogger backpakker said...

ive read of this...after tsunami, people are being wary of this..but celebrities dont just care, I guess

 

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