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After the Tsunami, Japan’s Sea Creatures Crossed an Ocean (nytimes.com)
98 points by joveian on Sept 30, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 7 comments

> “The development of materials that can float for ages, and the rising levels of seas due to climate change, make the possibility of these events larger and larger.”

I'm very curious how the total observed sea level rise of 19cm over the past 100 years has had any measurable effect on cross-continent species transfer by rafting.

I don't mean to belittle the current, or projected sea level rise, but merely point out that it's unhelpful to the climate debate to falsely attribute problems to climate change.

The source material for this stuff is things like plastic chairs. Sea level rise may not change the trip, but it will increase the frequency for people's stuff starting the trip as beach homes don't move until the ocean removes them which is becoming more common.

Put another way if the ocean was 7 inches lower then fewer homes would have been destroyed by the tsunami and less junk would have made the trip. Sea level rise stacks with other events so there is more small events and bigger events get magnified.

This is actually not too uncommon. Natural phenomena like hurricanes, tsunamis, etc are very good at keeping the diversity of ecosystems fresh. Parts of the southern Pacific Ocean are, by and large, a wasteland--not a lot of life in the water.

However, the small islands in the middle of the ocean are awash with all sorts of interesting life, commonly having landed there in some violent event. The warm climate actually is very good for growing vegetation, so herbivores can proliferate if they make it on-land.

The BBC documentary South Pacific covers this v well, definitely recommend watching.

Didn't mangroves cross the Atlantic to the US naturally?

There's also a long-term experiment being performed on the International Space Station:

http://knts.tsniimash.ru/ru/site/Experiment_q.aspx?idE=191 (in Russian, but Google Translate seems to work well on this one)

It's not finished yet but apparently preliminary results [1] show that microorganisms can be lifted into the upper atmosphere from the oceans somehow.

[1] https://www.energia.ru/ktt/archive/2015/01-2015/01-03.pdf

Give me your tired, your poor, your teeming masses huddled.

I know this is the wrong answer, but my hungry mouth welcomes every one of these creatures to their new home.

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