By: Alexandria Schurig
Summary: In Florida every four years new predictions are made on how much the sea level is going to rise. In 2019, the new set of predictions came with quite a shock. The sea levels rising is nothing new, however, they are now expected to rise at an even faster rate than before. Most scientist state that the levels are expected to rise anywhere from 17 to 31 inches in just 40 years, by the year 2060. This puts Florida’s lower laying areas at great risk for becoming covered in water. These areas have already seen an increase in yearly flooding which is only going to get worse, sometimes flooding can last up to 3 months. In places like Miami and Key West government officials are discussing ways to take these new numbers into account and prepare for the future. They know there is no way to avoid the water and that they must accommodate. In the Keys plans of raising roadways have been discussed as to avoid having them flood, but this is an expensive project for areas where not a lot of people live. It would cost about $128 million just to raise the roadways to the predicted levels of 2045, and a total of $181 million to meet the 2060 predictions. The scientists who study and release these numbers play an important role, cities use them to decide how to build their new buildings while placing the most important in areas of less risk. Communities in Florida have come together to recognize that this is a real problem that isn’t going away. They must come together to fight this ongoing battle and find solutions, like affordable housing, that work for all members of society no matter the social class.
Why we should care? Everyone should care about the rising sea levels in Florida because people are at risk of losing their homes. Also, there is potential that we could lose beautiful destinations like the Keys.
I found this particular article interesting because it explains how much protecting these areas is really going to cost. Florida, while not being the only state that needs help, needs the most support at a cost of about $75 billion. The article gets the perspective of a man who lives in Delray Beach who explains that water is no longer just a problem when it rains. It has become an everyday issue that needs solutions quickly. The main reason this article peaked my interest is because a lot of these towns can’t afford to do all of the work as its very expensive. It was purposed in the article that the fossil fuel companies should cover the cost of anything related to the seas levels rising and climate issues. Considering these companies are some of the main contributors to this crisis I don’t think that is a bad idea
Science in Action.
Dr. Jayantha Obeysekera is Director of Florida International University’s Sea Level Solutions Center.
Dr. Obeysekera's research is relevant to the blog topic because the students and faculty at Florida International University are constantly looking for solutions to the rising sea levels. They are always monitoring sea levels and thinking of solutions as things change. This is allowing differences to happen sooner. I also think it’s very important that they are training students in how to predict the sea and come up ways to protect people and infrastructure. This means when its their time to be the ones leading the charge against climate change, they’ll have plenty ideas of what is effective and what to do. Hopefully this means in the future we will be better prepared to handle the always changing sea levels.