HAGATNA, GUAM—Expressing relief that the effects of the climate crisis were perhaps not as dire as previously thought, the world’s leading marine ecologists announced Monday that rising sea levels over the past century were mostly caused by a clump of hair clogging the drain at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. “We have long attributed the rise to an increased reliance on fossil fuels and a subsequent melting of glaciers, but come to find out, it was just this big wad of hair gunk backing everything up,” said Helen Lopez of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, who added that once the stubborn ball of hair, dead skin cells, soap scum, bath oils, and hard-water deposits was cleared, the planet’s oceans should drop 8 to 9 inches, returning to levels not seen since 1880. “Fortunately, one of our divers conducting research on the seafloor used their foot to poke around near the drain and see what the problem was. This should be a huge weight off humanity’s shoulders, as it will no doubt offset some of the more catastrophic outcomes of climate change, but, man, that’s gonna be a real mother to pull out. It’s pretty nasty stuff.” At press time, the NOAA was reportedly soliciting bids from plumbers for a $6.5 billion government contract to rod the Mariana Trench.