‘Climate Change’ Will Kill Your Internet In 15 Years Or Something

Maybe. Possibly. We think. But, this can all be solved with a tax (the bold is theirs)

Study: Climate change could kill your internet in 15 years

Want to get a whole bunch of people to really, really care about climate change and rising sea levels? Tell them their internet is at risk.

In a new study, researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and the University of Oregon found that thousands of miles of buried fiber optic cable are at risk of drowning under the rising seas. This isn’t something that will happen in the distant future, but could be a reality in just 15 years, the study suggests. Better backup your Tumblr.

The peer-reviewed study combined data from the Internet Atlas, the map that keeps track of the physical internet, and projections of sea level incursion from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). It found that more than 4,000 miles of the conduit that carries the internet to much of the United States could be exposed to seawater by 2033. While the buried fiber optic cables are designed to be water-resistant, they are not waterproof, and that means potential trouble for coastal residents who like the internet (a.k.a. everyone but Luddites, infants, and my grandma).

And, it’s totally locked in!

(NY Post) The data showed that vast sections of the physical internet will be underwater in 15 years.

“The 15-year predictions are really kind of locked in,” said Carol Barford, a climate scientist at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

None of the articles I’ve read through actually say how much the seas will rise, but, the NY Post one does mention

“So much of the infrastructure that’s been deployed is right next to the coast, so it doesn’t take much more than a few inches or a foot of sea level rise for it to be underwater,” study co-author Paul Barford, a computer scientist at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, told National Geographic.

And that NG article

Cities like New York, Miami, and Seattle are likely to see up to 12 inches of extra water by 2030—well inside the time range of a mortgage on a house, or the planning horizon for big public infrastructure projects. A foot of extra water wending through some of those cities, the researchers say, would put about 20 percent of the nation’s key internet infrastructure underwater.

Good grief. The sea rise for the 20th Century was 7-8 inches, which is exactly average for the Holocene, and should be much greater for a warm period. To think that we’ll suddenly see 12 inches of sea rise in the next 12 years is beyond alarmism. This is people standing on the corner with a sign saying to repent.

Of course, there are lots of weasel words like might, may, possibly, could, suggest.

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