Sea-level rise may displace 13 million people in the US by 2100

This is a story that will “hit home” – but will Trump just try to build another wall?

Sea-level rise may displace 13 million people in the US by 2100.

Sea-level rise could force three times as many people in the US from their homes by the end of this century as previously thought, according to an analysis of population trends.

Mathew Hauer, a demographer at the University of Georgia in Athens, says that until recently most studies that predicted the risks associated with sea-level rise used current population numbers combined with projections of future sea levels.

The problem with that, he says, is that the predictions have become “outdated almost immediately”.

“Coastal communities are some of the most rapidly growing communities in the world, so you have to account for the fact that these areas are growing,” says Hauer. “Using current data, we’re underestimating what the future growth in coastal communities is likely to do in terms of placing people at risk of sea-level rise.”

Hauer and his colleagues therefore combined projected population growth with the scenarios of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on predicted sea-level rise.

They found that a 1.8-metre rise by 2100, near the top end of NOAA’s predictions, could lead to 13.1 million people being displaced – more than three times as many as indicated by current populations. A more modest 0.9-metre rise would still displace 4.3 million, also a three-fold increase on previous estimates.

I am aware that that 1.8 metre claim is incorrect. If you are not aware of the real number, it will be much, much higher then this with a corresponding number of American climate refugees (as high as 50 million). If any of us are still here in 2100 that is, but even if we’re not, the seas will have risen at least 9 feet by then and some science sources say as much as 30 feet (2.7 – 9.1 meters).

Pretty much “everyone” seems to be under order to under-report the real expected sea level rise. I’m sure it helps keep prime real estate values high as long as possible.

Oh, this is going to be a major problem – no more drinking water in these areas. Ground water inundation. Imagine that! Rising seas and fresh water don’t mix! Maybe the Trumpatolla could build a wall that would circle the entire island of Hawaii! But wait – that won’t work either:

In a statement announcing release of the study, Habel said, “This flooding will threaten $5 billion of taxable real estate; flood nearly 30 miles of roadway; and impact pedestrians, commercial and recreation activities, tourism, transportation, and infrastructure. The flooding will occur regardless of seawall construction, and thus will require innovative planning and intensive engineering efforts to accommodate standing water in the streets.”

The researchers also found that about 85 percent of the active cesspools in the study area are probably swamped with groundwater, which means that cesspool effluent, including remnant human waste, is  entering coastal groundwater and coastal environments.

Sea level rise of approximately three feet would fully inundate 39 cesspools, introducing effluent at the ground surface where people work and live. This presents a serious health concern that will become progressively more serious as contaminated waters begin breaching the ground surface.

“Our findings suggest that coastal communities in Hawai’i and globally are exposed to complex groundwater flooding hazards associated with sea level rise in addition to the typical concerns of coastal erosion and wave overtopping,” said Chip Fletcher, professor of Geology and Geophysics and associate dean in SOEST and principal investigator on the study.

Sea level rise is HUGE threat to humans. And like most everything else with this Administration, it’s not worth paying attention to.

Am I the only one who detects a major political problem here?


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