Popular Science

June 25, 2012

Sea Level Rising Rapidly on Both Coasts, Could Even Flood San Francisco Airport in a Decade

Share

The Northeast U.S. has been taking the brunt of rising sea levels not just in the country but in the world, with waters rising three to four times faster than the global average, according to new data. But that doesn’t spare the West Coast; in a decade, rising sea levels could flood the San Francisco International Airport.

According to research from the U.S. Geological Survey, the tides in a 1,000-kilometer stretch of coast from Cape Hatteras, N.C. to Boston have been rising at between 2 and 3.7 mm per year from 1950 to 2009. Doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s two to four times more than the global rate of .6 to 1 mm per year. Looking ahead to the future, another study on the West Coast projects that, barring an earthquake or other unforeseen circumstance, California’s sea levels will also rise faster than the global average. The slightly sinking state is projected to lose one foot of land in 10 years, two feet by 2050, and 5.5 feet within the century, while its neighbors, Washington and Oregon, will end up better off, actually falling a little below the global average. Worldwide, scientists estimate that global rising sea level average to be nine inches higher by 2030, 1.5 feet by 2050, and 4.5 feet by 2100. The first signs of the damage we’ll see will be in the coastal cities and towns, scientists predict, as storms pick up more frequently and cause serious damage to near-beach properties.

There are a lot of reasons why a coast in one country–or even different pars of the same coast–would get hit harder by rising sea levels than another. For one, climate change’s effects aren’t consistent across the globe as ice caps and glaciers melt; ocean currents, water salinity, water temperature, and other factors could all change how much water creeps over and onto land. Those variables combine to separate the local from the global. The East Coast stretch and California drew the geological short straw in the short term, but the rest of the world will eventually feel the pressure as well.

[Nature, L.A. Times]

Share





 
 

 
 

Hulu’s New Streaming Weapons Are Steven King And ‘Star Wars’ Heir J.J. Abrams – Forbes

In typically disruptive fashion, the news broke on Sept. 22, aka the statistical start of the 2014-15 broadcast TV season. Hulu and Warner Bros. TV announced a direct-to-series order for 11/22/63, an original series from Steven...
by Brian Montgomery
0

 
 
 

How Star Wars’ Harrison Ford almost missed out on Han Solo role – Daily Mail

By Kate Thomas for MailOnline Published: 03:51 EST, 22 September 2014 | Updated: 04:39 EST, 22 September 2014 70 View comments It’s one of the most famous film franchises in the history of cinema. And a new book has now r...
by Brian Montgomery
0

 
 
 

Star Wars, Pixar or Cars: What should Disney’s Hollywood Studios choose? – Orlando Business Journal (blog)

Could Star Wars’ Boba Fett, among many other characters, land a bigger job at Disney’s Hollywood Studios? Richard Bilbao Reporter- Orlando Business Journal Email  |  Twitter Disney’s Hollywood Studios is sla...
by Brian Montgomery
0