The consensus among experts is that climate change contributes to the rise of sea levels around the world. Many scientists have stated their conclusion that given the current rate of climate change, a rise ranging from a few inches to several feet is inevitable within the current century.
Among the numerous sites of archaeological or historical significance affected are grounds where researchers have found Native American artifacts. One location, called “Lemon Trees,” is a small island located along Louisiana’s Gulf Coast that has yielded a trove of pottery pieces over the years, but that is now threatened by encroaching salt water from rising sea levels.
Experts say two such sites are destroyed by the rising sea every year. In fact, over the coming decades, thousands of archeological sites will be irretrievably lost around the world.
Due to the greater-than-average sea level rise along the United States’ Eastern Seaboard, sites there are particularly endangered. Even the Statue of Liberty is not safe; in 2012, Superstorm Sandy put Liberty and Ellis Islands underwater, with Lady Liberty closed to the public for months.