SEA LEVEL CHANGE: CAUSES AND IMPACTS: A CASE STUDY OF PAKISTAN

S. AKHTAR, M. R. DHANANI

Abstract


Sea level change is not a new phenomenon. Sea-level rises and falls locally for short duration due to tidal effect, storm surges and generation of tsunami. Glacio-eustatic and tecto-eustatic mechanisms have remained important to explain long term global and local changes in sea-level. The phenomenon of global warming due to human induced greenhouse gases and resulting sea-level rise has gained attention during last three decades particularly after the release of IPCC assessment reports. Environmentalists by and large have consensus that sea-level rise is a serious concern for coastal environment and human settlements. Like other coastal countries sea-level rise phenomenon is also a concern for the coastal environment of Pakistan but its intensity of danger is much less as compared to low-lying coastal countries and islands like Bangladesh and Maldives. Pakistan has about 1600km long coast. Several geomorphologic and archaeological evidences confirm the glacio-eustatic and tecto-eustatic change of sea-level in the Pleistocene and the Holocene epoch. The evidences of current sea level rise reveal that tectonic mechanism and intrusion of sea in the deltaic region of the River Indus is due to reduction of river inflow not because of global warming phenomenon, are the main factors of sea-level change along the coast of Pakistan.

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