posted on Mar, 30 2010 @ 03:50 PM
Bay of Bengal Island Disappears into the Sea
Thursday, 25 March 2010 09:26
NEW DELHI — For nearly 30 years, India and Bangladesh have argued over control of a tiny rock island in the Bay of Bengal. Now rising sea levels
have resolved the dispute for them: the island's gone.
New Moore Island in the Sunderbans has been completely submerged, said oceanographer Sugata Hazra, a professor at Jadavpur University in Calcutta. Its
disappearance has been confirmed by satellite imagery and sea patrols, he said.
"What these two countries could not achieve from years of talking, has been resolved by global warming," said Hazra.
Scientists at the School of Oceanographic Studies at the university have noted an alarming increase in the rate at which sea levels have risen over
the past decade in the Bay of Bengal.
Until 2000, the sea levels rose about 3 millimeters (0.12 inches) a year, but over the last decade they have been rising about 5 millimeters (0.2
inches) annually, he said.
Another nearby island, Lohachara, was submerged in 1996, forcing its inhabitants to move to the mainland, while almost half the land of Ghoramara
island was underwater, he said. At least 10 other islands in the area were at risk as well, Hazra said.
"We will have ever larger numbers of people displaced from the Sunderbans as more island areas come under water," he said.