10 Treasures We’ll Lose as Sea Levels Rise


1
Sydney Opera House
The distinctive shells of the Sydney Opera House are beautifully illuminated at dusk. Guy Vanderelst/PhotoLibrary/Getty Images

The newest landmark on the list, the Sydney Opera House was completed in 1973 after 16 years of work and is considered a masterpiece of 20th-century architecture. The performing arts center is easily Australia's best-known structure, thanks to the large, white-tiled shells that form the building's roof and the glass facades that face the Sydney Harbor [source: Australian Government].

Like many of the world's wonders at risk, the opera house's waterfront location leaves it at the mercy of climate-change threats. The building is just about 11 feet (3.5 meters) above sea level, and climate scientists fear that the nearly 600 piers propping it up could be damaged by rising salt water and storm surges, as well as higher air temperatures and humidity and extreme weather events [source: Battenbough].

Related Articles

Sources

  • Australian Government. "Sydney Opera House." (March 23, 2014) http://australia.gov.au/about-australia/australian-story/sydney-opera-house
  • Baha'i Topics. "Basic Teachings of Baha'u'llah." (March 23, 2014) http://info.bahai.org/bahaullah-basic-teachings.html
  • Battenbough, Gemma. "Sydney Opera House at risk from climate change." Architecture & Design. Aug. 5, 2009. (March 23, 2014) http://www.architectureanddesign.com.au/news/industry-news/sydney-opera-house-at-risk-from-climate-change
  • Berg, Nate. "As Sea Levels Rise, Venice Sinks." The Atlantic Cities. March 22, 2012. (March 23, 2014) http://www.theatlanticcities.com/neighborhoods/2012/03/sea-level-rises-venice-sinks/1569/
  • CBC News. "Climate change may put UNESCO World Heritage Sites underwater." March 6, 2014. (March 23, 2014) http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/climate-change-may-put-unesco-world-heritage-sites-underwater-1.2561323
  • Codart. "Michelangelo's Madonna and Child in Bruges: context and reception." April 10, 2010. (March 23, 2014) http://www.codart.nl/exhibitions/details/2301/
  • History.com. "Statue of Liberty." (March 23, 2104) http://www.history.com/topics/statue-of-liberty
  • IOP Science. "Table." (March 23, 2014) http://ioppublishing.org/img/journalistArea/table.pdf
  • Knight, Christopher. "Venice floods attributed to climate change." Los Angeles Times. Nov. 13, 2012. (March 23, 2014) http://articles.latimes.com/2012/nov/13/entertainment/la-et-cm-climate-change-venice-floods-20121113
  • Lonely Planet. "Introducing Mozambique." (March 23, 2014) http://www.lonelyplanet.com/mozambique
  • Marzeion, Ben and Levermann, Anders. "Loss of cultural world heritage and currently inhabited places to sea-level rise." IOP Science. Feb. 4, 2014. (March 23, 2014) http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/9/3/034001/article
  • Monatine, Fen. "Leaving Our Descendants A Whopping Rise in Sea Levels." Yale Environment 360. July 24, 2013. (March 23, 2014) http://e360.yale.edu/feature/leaving_our_descendants_a_whopping_rise_in_sea_levels/2675/
  • National institute of Immovable Cultural Heritage. "Management Plan of the Ancient City of Nessebar." (March 23, 2014) http://pou-nesebar.org/en/general-description/natural-characteristic/
  • PBS. "Secrets of the Tower of London." (March 24, 2013) http://www.pbs.org/program/secrets-tower-london/
  • Raezer, David. "The Architecture of Venice: Anything but Italian." Approach Guides. (March 23, 2014) http://www.approachguides.com/blog/venice-architecture-byzantine-islamic-influences/
  • Rizzo, Johnna "Will Climate Change Swap the Statute of Liberty and Ellis Island?" Dec. 26, 2013. (March 23, 2014) National Geographic. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/12/131226-statue-liberty-ellis-island-climate-change-science-photos/
  • Rough Guides. "Havana." (March 23, 2014) http://www.roughguides.com/destinations/central-america-and-the-caribbean/cuba/havana/
  • Tablada de la Torre, Abel. "Micro-climatic Measurements in the Belen Area of Old Havana and three Courtyard Buildings: Comparison with Data from the Meteorological Station." Historian Office of Havana. September 2004. (March 23, 2014) http://www.academia.edu/2368365/Microclimatic_Measurements_in_the_Belen_Area_of_Old_Havana_and_three_Courtyard_Buildings_Comparison_with_Data_from_the_Meteorological_Station
  • TravelJournals.net. "Bruges Travel Stories." (March 24, 2013) http://www.traveljournals.net/explore/europe/belgium/bruges/
  • UNESCO. "Ancient City of Nessebar." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/217
  • UNESCO. "Baha'i Holy Places in Haifa and the Western Galilee." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1220
  • UNESCO. "Historic Centre of Brugge." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/996
  • UNESCO. "Le Havre, the City Rebuilt by Auguste Perret." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1181
  • UNESCO. "Old Havana and its Fortification System." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/pg.cfm?cid=31&id_site=204
  • UNESCO. "The Island of Mozambique." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/599
  • UNESCO. "Tower of London." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/488
  • UNESCO. "Venice and its Lagoon." (March 23, 2014) http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/394
  • Warne, Kennedy. "Climate Change Will Test Turtles' Mettle." National Geographic. March 17, 2014 (March 23, 2014) http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/03/140317-turtles-green-turtles-scattered-islands-europa-mayotte-glorieuses-longlining-bycatch-world/
  • World Port Source. "Port of Le Havre." (March 25, 2014) http://www.worldportsource.com/ports/review/FRA_Port_of_Le_Havre_604.php

UP NEXT

Where Have All the Seashells Gone?

Where Have All the Seashells Gone?

Beaches with no shells are not good. HowStuffWorks talk to experts about what's happening to the shells and what to do to keep them from disappearing.


More to Explore