Kerry explains why SecState focuses on oceans in terrorism age

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( – Secretary of State John Kerry told high school students on Wednesday that “your parents’ money is going to pay for the harder impact of storms that we’re suffering – much more damage than ever before as a result of the intensity of the storms that we suffer because of climate change.”

Speaking to students at Montgomery Blair H.S. in Silver Spring, Maryland on Wednesday, Kerry also answered his own question – “Why is the Secretary of State of the United States of America, in an age where we have terrorism and we have several wars going on at the same time – why are we focused on the oceans, and what does that have to do with my life every single day?” – by telling the youngsters that “the oceans are essential to your life.”

The Secretary of State visited the school in suburban Maryland to congratulate its National Science Bowl-winning team, as well as the runners-up in the National Ocean Science Bowl.

Kerry told the students that “we are seeing predictions of [sea level rise] anywhere from three to six feet, and over a course of time, end of century into the next century, unpredictable levels well more than that conceivably, because if the Antarctic ice sheet continues [melting] at the rate it’s going, we’re going to have a serious, serious challenge.

“Already we have refugees in this world as a result of the rise of ocean levels, particularly in the Pacific Islands. There are island states where their leaders are talking about where they’re going to move to – a whole nation-state – and where they’re going to live,” Kerry said.

The Secretary of State also said that “last year was the hottest year in recorded history.”

“That’s why this is so urgent, and that’s why I’m here today. Because we’re trying to raise people’s consciousness about just how serious this challenge really is,” Kerry told the students.

However, after a record 127-month period in which no major hurricanes made landfall in the continental U.S.. Kathryn Sullivan, administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) told reporters last week that “there is uncertainty as to whether the high-activity era of Atlantic hurricanes has ended.”

NOAA’s updated coastal tide measurements  of more than 200 coastal locations– including seven Pacific island groups – also show that many are currently “experiencing little-to-no change in mean sea level.”  At this rate, it would take more than 20,000 years just to cover the base of the Statue of Liberty, climate skeptic Anthony Watts calculated.

In a recently published study, NASA-led researchers found that contrary to Kerry’s claim, Antarctic sea ice has actually been expanding due to powerful winds and currents that keep warm air and water away.

And according to Dr. Roy Spencer at the University of Huntsville, Alabama, NOAA satellite data show that 2015 was only “the third warmest year globally” – behind 1998 and 2010.

— Written by Barbara Hollingsworth