Light displays show predicted sea level rise in Galway

Four light displays will be installed across Ireland to show the predicted sea level rise as a result of storms.

LED light displays have been installed along the coast to show the predicted sea level rise in Galway.

The first of four installations planned for various locations around Ireland, the light displays were created with the aim of promoting conversations on climate change.

Climate change and rising sea levels are things that impact us all. Thus, it is important that we are aware of what the future holds for the planet.

A visual representation ‒ bringing the numbers to life

LED light displays show the predicted sea level rise in Galway.
Credit: Facebook / Mike Cubbard (Cllr Mike Cubbard )

The LED light displays show the predicted sea level rise in Galway to give people a visual representation of what is to come. In turn, promoting conversations on the effects of climate change.

Dr Zoë Roseby is a Postdoctoral researcher in sea level change at Trinity College Dublin. She explained to RTÉ’s Morning Ireland earlier this week that the installations will be made up of horizontal LED lights.

At a height of 6.23 ft (1.9 m) above ground level, the display will run along the Spanish Arch, Ard Bia in Nimmos, and the Long Walk on the Claddagh Basin.

Light displays show predicted sea level rise in Galway ‒ a stark reminder of the impact of climate change

LED light displays show the predicted sea level rise in Galway.
Credit: Facebook / Mike Cubbard (Cllr Mike Cubbard )

The predicted sea level rise will be the result of a storm surge. This occurs when strong winds drive water towards the coast.

Speaking on the installation, Roseby told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, “What they’ll see is horizontal lines of light that are 1.9 m high above the ground level of Spanish Arch. What that 1.9 m represents is a storm surge in the year 2150.

“We’re looking at storm surge that would be akin to Storm Eleanor, which many people will remember from January 2018, where there was flooding into and around the area.”

Many people along Ireland’s west coast will remember the damage and destruction caused by Storm Eleanor back in 2018. Unfortunately, experts predict that this is a pattern we will see repeated in the coming years.

One of four installations planned for Ireland ‒ an important project

There will also be an informative exhibition at Galway Museum.
Credit: Twitter / @AlexandraReves

The light displays show the predicted sea level rise in Galway. Currently, they are the first of four such projects planned for Ireland. Similar installations will also appear in Dublin and Wexford in the coming months.

Finnish artists Timo Aho and Pekka Niittyvirta created the installations alongside the Línte na Farraige project team. The predictions are based on emissions scenarios from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (PCC) Report AR6. Data was also collected from the Irish tide gauge data.

Speaking about the project’s purpose, Roseby explained, “It aims to encourage individuals to consider how collective societal action can mitigate climate change and sea level rise, to ultimately inspire a more sustainable and resilient future.”

As well as the light installation, there will also be an exhibition at the Galway Museum. Here, visitors can get more information on the impact of climate change on the area.

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