What is Moon wobble?
- According to the Nasa's website, when the Moon makes its elliptical orbit, its velocity varies and alters causing our perspective of the "light side" to appear at slightly different angles. This is what it calls the Moon's wobble or that is how it appears to our eyes. Hindustan TimesNasa says Moon's 'wobble' will cause devastating floods: Here's what it means
13 July, 2021 - 06:24pm
And we'd better start planning now, before it's too late.
And in recent years, we've seen climate change increase the number and strength of hurricanes, in addition to other seriously damaging weather events globally. But something else, more gradual yet still worrying is on the horizon, and it could change the shape of life on the coasts of the U.S.
Combined with rising sea levels due to global warming, the moon's lunar cycle will amplify low and high tides in the late 2030s, which could lead to serious coastal flooding throughout the U.S., according to a recent study published in the journal Nature Climate Change.
And we'd better start planning now, before it's too late.
In coastal areas, high-tide floods (also termed "nuisance floods"), happen once the tides rise roughly 2 ft (0.6 m) higher than the daily average for high tides, which leads to flooding in streets, or through storm drains. These floods are less serious than major catastrophic events we typically associate with major climate events, but they still have a serious effect on society: forcing businesses to close, filling streets and ruining homes, and enabling cesspools to flood and spill into public areas. And the longer such a scenario lasts, the more lasting the damage to a community.
In 2019, more than 600 such floods happened in the U.S., but a new study from NASA suggests that nuisance floods will likely grow in frequency by the 2030s, and will involve most of the U.S. coastline inundated with four times the number of high-tide flood days each year for a full decade, or longer. Longer coastal flood seasons will cause serious disruptions to lives and livelihoods, especially if communities don't immediately start planning for the eventuality, warn the researchers of the study. "It's the accumulated effect over time that will have an impact," said Assistant Professor Phil Thompson of the University of Hawaii in a NASA blog post. "If it floods 10 or 15 times a month, a business can't keep operating with its parking lot under water."
"People lose their jobs because they can't get to work," said Thompson. "Seeping cesspools become a public health issue." And there are multiple causes behind this development, the first of which is, predictably, the sea level rise from global climate change. Glacial ice continues to melt at a record rate, dumping colossal volumes of meltwater into the ocean. This has increased average sea levels by roughly 8 to 9 inches (21 to 24 cm) since the year 1880, and roughly a third of that increase happened in the last 25 years. If trends continue, sea levels could rise 1 to 12 ft (0.3 to 2.5 m) higher than where they were in 2000, by 2100. Of course, this in part could change depending on whether humans sufficiently reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the near future.
However, the moon, too, could play a vital role in the exacerbation of flooding in the 2030s, when its orbit's "wobble", which is due to a change in its relative position to Earth every 18.6 years, could amplify the cycle of high and low tides, making lower tides lower and higher tides higher. As of writing, we're already in a tide-amplifying cycle of the moon, and the next one will happen in the mid-2030s — when worldwide sea levels will already have increased enough for these amplified tides to create a perfect storm of tide-raising forces, where the combined effect of the lunar cycle and climate change-linked sea-level rise would exacerbate high-tide flooding throughout the entire coastline of the United States. In just 14 years, high-tide flooding will shift "from a regional issue to a national issue with a majority of U.S. coastlines being affected," said the study authors.
This is a scary development, but it's important to note that we still have time to minimize the damage from potentially devastating flooding due to the combined effects of lunar cycles and sea-level rise. Perhaps not enough to avoid the rising waters altogether, but planning for it, financially, in terms of infrastructure, where you live, and social support systems (personal or top-down governance) is crucial. And with a little more than a decade to go, most of us can prepare adequately. If we decide to take it seriously.
13 July, 2021 - 06:15pm
When the wobble begins, American coastal cities may suddenly start to flood three or four times as often as they do now, according to research by NASA and the University of Hawaii that was published in the journal Nature Climate Change last month.
In the study, scientists predicted that the lunar wobble will cause increased clusters of flooding that will significantly disrupt life and damage infrastructure throughout coastal cities that have acclimated to far milder and less frequent floods — an eerie reminder of Earth’s close relationship with its natural satellite, and perhaps even a pressing infrastructure issue.
As Live Science reports, this lunar wobble is actually a perfectly natural cycle that’s been going on for eons and will continue to do so long after we’re gone. The Moon’s orbit creates periods of higher and lower tides according to a roughly 18.6-year rhythm.
What makes it dangerous this time around is the fact that the sea level has been rising thanks to the effects of climate change and unchecked greenhouse gas emissions. So when the next tide-amplifying period begins in the early 2030s, the resulting floods will likely be worse, more persistent, and more dangerous than ever before.
“It’s the accumulated effect over time that will have an impact,” University of Hawaii researcher and lead study author Phil Thompson said in a news release. “If it floods 10 or 15 times a month, a business can’t keep operating with its parking lot under water. People lose their jobs because they can’t get to work. Seeping cesspools become a public health issue.”
READ MORE: A ‘wobble’ in the moon’s orbit could result in record flooding in the 2030s, new study finds [Live Science]
More on flooding: Deadly Condo Collapse Linked To Climate Change
13 July, 2021 - 06:15pm
13 July, 2021 - 03:52pm
July 13, 2021 | 4:52pm | Updated July 13, 2021 | 5:42pm
The study, conducted by NASA and the University of Hawaii, examined ongoing sea-level rise and the dire situation coastal cities will face during the next lunar shift, or “wobble,” CBS News reported.
The so-called wobble that occurs in the moon’s orbit is a naturally occurring phenomenon that was first documented in 1728 and happens every 18.6 years — resulting in changes in the tides.
“In half of the Moon’s 18.6-year cycle, Earth’s regular daily tides are suppressed: High tides are lower than normal, and low tides are higher than normal,” NASA said.
“In the other half of the cycle, tides are amplified: High tides get higher, and low tides get lower. Global sea-level rise pushes high tides in only one direction – higher. So half of the 18.6-year lunar cycle counteracts the effect of sea-level rise on high tides, and the other half increases the effect.”
While the wobble itself doesn’t cause catastrophic damage, scientists found the next high-tide floods will be much worse when taking rising sea levels due to climate change into account, the outlet reported.
Researchers mapped the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s sea-level rise scenarios, flooding thresholds and astronomical cycles and found flooding in coastal locales could be much worse come the 2030s when the next “wobble” is set to begin, the outlet said.
The rising waters are expected to cause serious damage to infrastructure and displace coastal communities.
In 2019, NOAA clocked over 600 catastrophic floods and researchers predict there’ll be three to four times that in the mid-2030s after another decade of rising sea levels.
“Low-lying areas near sea level are increasingly at risk and suffering due to the increased flooding, and it will only get worse,” NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said.
“The combination of the Moon’s gravitational pull, rising sea levels, and climate change will continue to exacerbate coastal flooding on our coastlines and across the world.”
In the US, Hawaii and Guam are most at risk for these effects but rising waters are already expected to displace over 100 million people worldwide and leave huge swathes of coastline uninhabitable before the year 2100.
While hurricanes bring more floods than high tides, scientists said the frequency of the floods will be the true danger.
“It’s the accumulated effect over time that will have an impact,” said Phil Thompson, the lead author of the study, which was published in the journal “Nature Climate Change” in late June.
“If it floods 10 or 15 times a month, a business can’t keep operating with its parking lot under water. People lose their jobs because they can’t get to work. Seeping cesspools become a public health issue.”