A new report by the IPCC said that previous climate models vastly underestimated the rise in sea levels.
Credit: Mark Wilson

Sea levels are rising much faster than earlier predictions.

A new report by climate scientists says that previous estimates of sea level rises by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) were much too conservative.

"The new findings highlight that the IPCC is far from being alarmist and in fact in some cases rather underestimates possible risks." said report co-author Stefan Rahmstorf, of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, according to the Daily Mail.

"The oceans are rising 60 per cent faster than the IPCC’s latest best estimates, according to the new research." 

Climate experts have updated their predictions saying that sea levels will rise an average of 3.2 millimeters (0.125 inches) per year.

That is up from the 2007 estimate of 2mm (0.078 inches) per year.

The new estimate would mean a sea level rise of about one meter by the end of the century, said Science Daily.

Study co-author Grant Foster of Tempo Analytics said that the new estimate was likely far more accurate and much worse for those living near coastlines.

"I would say that a meter of sea level rise by the end of the century is probably close to what you would find if you polled the people who know best," Foster told AFP.

"In low-lying areas where you have massive numbers of people living within a meter of sea level, like Bangladesh, it means that the land that sustains their lives disappears, and you have hundreds of millions of climate refugees."

The re-assessment was carried out by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Tempo Analytics and Laboratoire d'Etudes en Géophysique et Océanographie Spatiales

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