Research published today in Nature warns that rising seas will devastate coastal habitats.
The study uses evidence that dates back to the last Ice Age. 17,000 years ago, it was possible to walk from Germany to England, from Russia to America, from mainland Australia to Tasmania. Sea levels were about 120 metres lower than today. But, as the last Ice Age ended, the oceans rose quickly – by one metre per century on average.
The new study, by a global research team led by Macquarie University, warns that rapid sea-level rise and coastal habitat retreat will happen again if the world warms above Paris Agreement targets (1.5-2°C).