Sea Level Rise

Accelerated erosion

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There will always be beaches, but sea level rise will ensure that they will not be in the same place in the future. The beaches will still exist throughout this change, but many of the buildings may not. Efforts to save development, however do threaten beaches, such as shoreline armoring structures.

Although relative amounts of rise may seem very small, only a few millimeters per year, the cumulative effect of these small rises each year over a long period of time (100+ years) causes major problems. Accelerated rates of erosion are attributed to sea level rise and erosion causes large economic losses around the world each year due to the close proximity of buildings and critical infrastructure. This includes transportation systems, gas and oil lines as well as electricity lines and power plants.

Most developed coasts and beaches have buildings very close to the ocean leaving little room for the ever-expanding ocean. The future effects of sea level rise on coastal civilization over the entire world are of great concern. Over half of the world’s population lives within 100 km of the coast. Over the next 50 years, damage due to coastal development will be devastating, but if the rate of sea level rise increases, the results could be catastrophic. This issue threatens areas from New York City in the United States to the Pearl River Delta in China to the Maldives.

The world map below allows you to see elevations of coastal areas. Areas in red are the lowest in elevation and are most prone to flooding. Check out Manhattan in New York City. If you think the situation there looks dire, be sure to check out the effects of a 2 m rise in sea level on Pearl River Delta in China, home to more than 40 million people. Map courtesy of globalwarmingart.com


Surfing in / Sea Level Rise

Sea rise along South Carolina coast accelerating faster than realized, researcher says

Within 50 years, the sea off Charleston will be rising about one inch every five years — twice as fast as it was rising about a century ago and one-third faster than it was in 2000.

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Huge Cavity in Antarctic Glacier Signals Rapid Decay

A gigantic cavity – two-thirds the area of Manhattan and almost 1,000 feet (300 meters) tall – growing at the bottom of Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica is one of several disturbing discoveries reported in a new NASA-led study of the disintegrating glacier.

Comments Off on Huge Cavity in Antarctic Glacier Signals Rapid Decay

California’s coastal habitats face existential threat from rising seas

Climate change is transforming the state’s coast but with habitats hemmed in by cliffs, condos and farms, pre-emptive action is needed to preserve biodiversity.

Comments Off on California’s coastal habitats face existential threat from rising seas

The Marshall Islands: A nation that fears it’s on the brink of extinction

In a battle between man and nature, officials say climate change is threatening the islands’ existence. The most extreme predictions say that rising sea levels could make the nation uninhabitable as soon as 2030.

Comments Off on The Marshall Islands: A nation that fears it’s on the brink of extinction

Why is sea level rising faster in some places along the US East Coast than others?

Sea levels are rising globally from ocean warming and melting of land ice, but the seas aren’t rising at the same rate everywhere. Sea levels have risen significantly faster in some U.S. East Coast regions compared to others.

Comments Off on Why is sea level rising faster in some places along the US East Coast than others?

After Major Hurricanes, Communities Are Building Back Bigger, Not Smarter

ortley-beach-nj-2

In the aftermath of major coastal storms, the mantra to “build back better” is often touted repeatedly in rebuilding strategies, with promises to construct resilient houses more capable of surviving the next storm. But a new study of five American coastal communities finds that homes are actually being built back bigger, not better, after catastrophic weather events, dwarfing the structures that were lost…

Comments Off on After Major Hurricanes, Communities Are Building Back Bigger, Not Smarter

California prepares policy for coastal ‘retreat’

Oceanfront homes could be demolished along California’s coastline under a groundbreaking proposal to preserve the state’s made-for-movies beaches before they’re destroyed by rising seawater. The California Coastal Commission plans to release guidance early next year for dealing with sea-level rise in residential areas.

Comments Off on California prepares policy for coastal ‘retreat’

Coastal Warning: An Unwelcome Messenger on the Risks of Rising Seas; By Orrin H. Pilkey

Marine scientist Orrin Pilkey has long been cautioning about sea level rise and the folly of building and rebuilding along coastlines. In an interview with Yale Environment 360, he talks about why an eventual retreat from oceanfront property on the U.S. coast is inevitable.

Comments Off on Coastal Warning: An Unwelcome Messenger on the Risks of Rising Seas; By Orrin H. Pilkey

‘Washaway Beach,’ fastest-eroding place on the West Coast, cobbles together a solution

There’s a reason a quiet and desolate strip of sand here is nicknamed Washaway Beach. Coastal erosion has claimed an average of 100 feet of this shoreline every year for the last century. That makes North Cove the fastest-eroding place on the West Coast.

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Recent / Sea Level Rise

Huge Cavity in Antarctic Glacier Signals Rapid Decay

February 2nd, 2019

A gigantic cavity – two-thirds the area of Manhattan and almost 1,000 feet (300 meters) tall – growing at the bottom of Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica is one of several disturbing discoveries reported in a new NASA-led study of the disintegrating glacier.

Read More

California’s coastal habitats face existential threat from rising seas

January 2nd, 2019

Climate change is transforming the state’s coast but with habitats hemmed in by cliffs, condos and farms, pre-emptive action is needed to preserve biodiversity.

Read More

The Marshall Islands: A nation that fears it’s on the brink of extinction

December 24th, 2018

In a battle between man and nature, officials say climate change is threatening the islands’ existence. The most extreme predictions say that rising sea levels could make the nation uninhabitable as soon as 2030.

Read More

Why is sea level rising faster in some places along the US East Coast than others?

December 19th, 2018

Sea levels are rising globally from ocean warming and melting of land ice, but the seas aren’t rising at the same rate everywhere. Sea levels have risen significantly faster in some U.S. East Coast regions compared to others.

Read More

After Major Hurricanes, Communities Are Building Back Bigger, Not Smarter

ortley-beach-nj-2

December 19th, 2018

In the aftermath of major coastal storms, the mantra to “build back better” is often touted repeatedly in rebuilding strategies, with promises to construct resilient houses more capable of surviving the next storm. But a new study of five American coastal communities finds that homes are actually being built back bigger, not better, after catastrophic weather events, dwarfing the structures that were lost…

Read More

California prepares policy for coastal ‘retreat’

December 7th, 2018

Oceanfront homes could be demolished along California’s coastline under a groundbreaking proposal to preserve the state’s made-for-movies beaches before they’re destroyed by rising seawater. The California Coastal Commission plans to release guidance early next year for dealing with sea-level rise in residential areas.

Read More

Coastal Warning: An Unwelcome Messenger on the Risks of Rising Seas; By Orrin H. Pilkey

December 6th, 2018

Marine scientist Orrin Pilkey has long been cautioning about sea level rise and the folly of building and rebuilding along coastlines. In an interview with Yale Environment 360, he talks about why an eventual retreat from oceanfront property on the U.S. coast is inevitable.

Read More

‘Washaway Beach,’ fastest-eroding place on the West Coast, cobbles together a solution

November 24th, 2018

There’s a reason a quiet and desolate strip of sand here is nicknamed Washaway Beach. Coastal erosion has claimed an average of 100 feet of this shoreline every year for the last century. That makes North Cove the fastest-eroding place on the West Coast.

Read More

Is Your Home At Risk Of Flooding From Rising Seas By 2050? Check This Map.

November 14th, 2018

Even if the world more aggressively tackles global warming, about 350,000 homes across the US, worth about $190 billion at today’s prices, are built on land that’s at risk of annual flooding by 2050. And if no steps are taken to curb carbon emissions, the number of at-risk homes jumps to about 385,000.

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The Largest River Delta in Europe

November 12th, 2018

Over the past century, the Volga Delta has grown from 3,222 square kilometers (1,244 square miles) in 1880 to 27,224 square kilometers (10,511 square miles) today. This significant growth is due both to sea level changes in the Caspian and the broad, gentle slope of the delta.

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