Rising sea levels are expected to wipe out several coastal regions, including Florida.
In her new book, Rising, Elizabeth Rush writes about how the US coastline will be radically transformed in the coming years. Excerpts from the book show just how serious the threat is.
In 2016, University of Miami's geology department head Harold Wanless spoke about the impact of temperature on the sea levels. "Only 7 percent of the heat being trapped by greenhouse gases is stored in the atmosphere," he said. "Do you know where the other 93 percent lives?"
"In the ocean," Wanless continued. "That heat is expanding the ocean, which is contributing to sea level rise, and it is also more importantly, creating the setting for something we really don't want to have happen: rapid melt of ice."
The rising level of the sea is expected to swallow Florida. It will not only restrict flood protection but also impact freshwater supplies and the health of the environment. The drainage systems in the US state help in the transport of floodwaters from small canals.
However, it is believed that the rise in the level of the sea will make it tough to push water to the sea, which may lead to clogging of landscapes like Dolphin Expressway and its branches. There will be a time, as a result, when the state will gradually go underwater.
While the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change believes that the sea level will rise to two-feet only by the end of the century, the United Nations expects the rise will be up to three feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, on the other hand, believes that the rise will be of about six and a half feet only.
Florida needs a lot of resources to control the rising sea level and protect its residents from the disasters awaiting them in future. The state, on the verge of doing so, requires complete support from the federal government to control the situation. In case, it fails to keep control, the state will soon disappear.