thecynicalmonk

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About thecynicalmonk

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  1. Hi everyone I'm asking this for a novel I'm writing and need a little help on the scientific side, especially related to Earth Sciences and hydrology. We all know that the ice caps are melting and this will cause ocean levels to rise. Let's imagine this process happens faster than expected, and in around 80 years from now around three-quarters of the polar ice has gone. From what I've been reading this will mean many coastal cities and towns will be under severe threat or even be washed away altogether. This won't happen overnight so no doubt there will be some population migration to other areas. But how would hydrologists tackle the enormous task of getting rid of ocean floodwater in these circumstances? If a hydrologist were charged with removing floodwater in an entire city, or even an entire affected coastline, are there any methods available to achieve this apart from the kind of land reclamation systems used in Holland? Bear in mind that this story is set 80 years from now, so technology may have advanced... if there are any experimental systems being developed at the moment perhaps they would have been perfected by then? Thanks for your help everyone.. any thoughts much appreciated!
  2. Could there be a flooded Earth?

    OK, thanks for all your ideas everyone, please keep them coming! Delta1212 - I get what you're saying, that there is only so much water on Earth and there isn't enough to flood all the land (or a large part of it). But can anyone envisage a situation where the very physical molecular structure of rainfall water is altered (by chemical pollutants for instance), making the water denser (if that is the right word) so that it physically occupies more space than it normally would (e.g. a rainstorm of 1 cubic litre of water per hectare would be the equivalent of, say, 10 cubic litres of water)? I know this is very far-fetched, but could it theoretically happen, and if so, under what circumstances? Is it conceivable that man-made contaminants could change rainfall in this way (if clouds contained some kind of a gas or crystalline substance created by pollution which in turn brought about this "mutation"?) Thanks for all your considered and imaginative responses!
  3. Could there be a flooded Earth?

    Hi everyone Well first of all I must point out that I am not a scientist in any way, but I do have a couple of science-related things I would like to ask purely for a novel I am writing... I hope you will bear with me and I very much appreciate any responses! At the moment it seems clear that due to global warming the Earth's ice caps are melting and this will eventually cause coastlines to be eroded. Some cities may even disappear underwater. But what I want to ask is: Is there any scientifically plausible scenario (however far-fetched this may be) which would cause all of the Earth to be completely flooded or in imminent danger of being so? One thing that did occur to me was that perhaps some of the pollutants being released into the atmosphere could combine in an unexpected way and affect rainfall, causing its water density to increase drastically... So a single rainstorm would release much more "concentrated" drops of water, causing severe flooding, adding to the problem of rising tides, and leading eventually to flooding of over three quarters of current land mass. I know this is far-fetched, but is there any way, scientifically speaking, that this could be possible? I am aware of the scenario put forward by Stephen Baxter in his novel "Flood", in which he suggests the Earth becomes flooded as a result of seismic shifts which then release vast underwater reservoirs. But I need something different, or I'd just be copying his idea... Does anyone feel my rainfall density idea "holds water" (apologies for the pun)? The other thing I would like to ask is regarding which area of science would be trying to solve such a flooding problem. Imagine two young, inexperienced scientists desperately trying to make a name for themselves by making a lot of the water "disappear". I'm not talking about some sort of civil engineering project, more an experimental method which involves delving into unknown areas of science and trying to alter water at a molecular level. In their recklessness they actually end up vapourising (or otherwise making disappear) far too much of the ocean water, leaving the Earth with dry seabeds. Which area of science would such individuals be likely to belong to? Would they be physicists? Chemists? Hydrologists? Could anyone point me in the right direction here as (I'm sure you can tell) I'm not a scientist myself. Many thanks for all your ideas!