Indian islands disappear under rising seas


Two islands off the Indian subcontinent seem to have disappeared.

Scientists believe it is more evidence of the impact of rising sea levels caused by global warming.

For six years scientists based in Kolkata have been examining the impact of climate change on the islands of the Sunderbans, a vast area where the Ganges and the Brahmaputra rivers empty into the Bay of Bengal.

Official records list 102 islands in Indian Territory, but scientists examining satellite imagery now say two have disappeared and a dozen more could go under.

The Sunderbans are a natural buffer shielding millions from storms and tidal waves whipped up in the Bay of Bengal.

Scientists say cyclones are now more intense, causing more severe flooding, erosion and salt water contamination in coastal areas.

© 2006 Australian Broadcasting Corporation
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