New York set to be 'biggest loser' as sea levels rise

Some of the world's most beautiful places could be under threat from rising sea levels sooner than we thought, according to a new report.

New York, Vancouver and the holiday islands of the Maldives are among the places that are currently only just above sea level.

The new report suggests that previous calculations about the threat of rising sea levels may have been underestimated by up to 20 per cent.

In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said that sea levels would rise by an average of 28cm (1ft) by the year 2100.

But this is only an average. The new Dutch report takes in regional variations which take into account things like water salinity and ocean currents.

According to the BBC, which reported from the European Geosciences Union (EGU) meeting in Vienna, Roderik van der Wal from the University of Utrecht, said: 'Everybody will still have the impact, and in many places they will get the average rise.'

'But places like New York are going to have a larger contribution than the average - 20 per cent more in this case - and Reykjavik will be better off."

Of the 13 regions where the team makes specific projections, New York sees the biggest increase from the global average, although Vancouver, Tasmania and The Maldives are also forecast to see above-average impacts.

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