All sea-level rise is not created equal

The collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet is one of the major threats in climate change scenarios because models estimate it could lead to a sea-level rise of about five meters.

That averaged figure is misleading; the actual distribution of sea-level rise will not be uniform. Because an ice sheet attracts nearby ocean by gravity, the collapsing sheet will create a drop in sea level as water moves away from it. Moreover, when the weight of the ice is removed, the land that supported it springs up. According to new findings, sea level is predicted to rise most around North America—6.3 meters—and in the Indian Ocean.