Letter to the Editor: Sea Level Rise from England

Photo Credit Lara Constantine

Last month, The Spyglass worked with KSBY to discuss the issue of Sea Level Rise. Although rising seas will have profound effects on the Morro Bay coast, it is a worldwide issue. To gain a better perspective on how students are dealing with Sea Level Rise across the world, reporter Taylor Dewey reached out to a student named Lara Constantine, who attends St. Hilda’s Church of England High School in Liverpool, England. Constantine chose to respond to The Spyglass with the following Letter to the Editor about her experiences with Sea Level Rise.

The following letter has been edited for grammatical and formatting reasons.


My name is Lara Constantine, I am from Liverpool and I am in sixth form doing my A-levels and a BTEC. Climate change and sea-level rise are very
important topic to me as it is happening now, yet politicians don’t see it as a priority.

Climate change is a massive problem that will impact everyone and has
already started to happen. It is defined as a change in global or regional
climate patterns that have happened due to the increased usage of fossil
fuels that emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. But this doesn’t take into account the effects that it has to us. The global temperature has risen by 1.9 degrees since 1880, I know this doesn’t seem like a big figure, but this will cause major effects like melting of the ice caps, wildfires and storms. The melting of the ice caps also results in Sea Level Rise which is affecting coastal villages around the world.

In October 2019 I went to Fairbourne which is a coastal village in north Wales. The reason I went here is because Fairbourne’s future is very uncertain, but it’s likely that the residents here will become the first climate refugees. The village that is home to 700 people is constantly at risk of floods because the land is completely flat and their only defense against the sea is a sea wall that is only being funded until 2054. Their local council has made evacuation plans that consist of basically “removing every piece of human inhabitation”.

This shows what Fairbourne’s land will be like with both sea level rise and annual flooding. Almost the entirety of Fairbourne and more will be full of water, including 700 people homes which will be flooded.
The red is the land at risk of Fairbourne by 2030 and the blue is the current water body. This is just from sea level rise alone, not floods and storms.

Each year the sea will only continue to rise. It’s too late for Fairbourne, but if us and people all around the world start take action now we will be protecting other communities and homes throughout the world.

I believe that climate change needs to be spoken about a lot more
worldwide. I think that part of the reason people don’t want to talk about it
is of lack of education. No one really understands the effects it has to the
Earth or how we can prevent it from getting worse. People also are totally
oblivious to it and don’t believe that it is real. The only reason I learned about climate change is because I chose to take geography at GCSE and have now chosen to do it as an A-level. I think it needs to be taught to everyone so they can learn how they can reduce their carbon dioxide input and what causes it, even if it’s just something small like starting to recycle or reuse plastics.

Thank you,

Lara Constantine

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