NYC and rising seas

david52 Zone 6September 11, 2012

I thought this article from the NY Times about the cities' plans for adapting to climate change were interesting.

snip "Klaus H. Jacob, a research scientist at Columbia University's Earth Institute, said the storm surge from Irene came, on average, just one foot short of paralyzing transportation into and out of Manhattan.

If the surge had been just that much higher, subway tunnels would have flooded, segments of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Drive and roads along the Hudson River would have turned into rivers, and sections of the commuter rail system would have been impassable or bereft of power, he said.

The most vulnerable systems, like the subway tunnels under the Harlem and East Rivers, would have been unusable for nearly a month, or longer, at an economic loss of about $55 billion, said Mr. Jacob, an adviser to the city on climate change and an author of the 2011 state study that laid out the flooding prospects.

"We've been extremely lucky," he said. "I'm disappointed that the political process hasn't recognized that we're playing Russian roulette."

With more rain and higher seas, some envision more turmoil - like mile after mile of apartment buildings without working elevators, lights or potable water.

Its not just coastal cities, its any city along a river, what with these mega-rain storms, and that takes into account a whole lot of cities.

Thankfully (snort) out here we just have to worry about drought, and the Animas River is now tied for the 4th lowest flow in 100 years.

Point being that we are going to need to address major issues of infrastructure in the very near future.

Here is a link that might be useful: link

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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Coastal southern California is expected to be permanently under water before any of the other areas. That should inconvenience a few people.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 11:52AM
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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

Point being that we are going to need to address major issues of infrastructure in the very near future.

What are the odds of that happening with the current crop of GOP climate deniers and their deep-pocket contributors? After doing battle with the climate troglodytes, then there are the spending troglodytes.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 12:45PM
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AH gee they just finished most of the Hudson River Front Park quite nice runs for miles along the River on Manhattan side. I'd also be concerned about further changes to the tidal wetlands in Jamaica Bay & whats left of The Jersey Meadow lands.
The red area in the Jersey Map were all developed through the late 60s through today. Including Met Life Stadium Secaucus, Rutherford, Carlstadt I see Bayonne & good Parts of Jersey City requiring protection the major problems not appearing for years "so they say"
Most people who buy property in Hoboken think the area a mile in from the River is safer when actually that is the flood plain. Filled in by the railroads, Hoboken was once an island till the railroads filled all the western end of the town in & joined it to the jersey mainland.
I see Trumps proposed Bronx golf course also needing protection. AH well I'll be more than likely gone before it's severe. I'm about 5 blocks from the River.

Heres a 2 year old planning map

Here is a link that might be useful: Hudson River Walk old shots

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 3:33PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

I once pointed out to some friends their place was on a floodplain, the giant pipe passing beneath the elevated, dike-like road above and opening out onto their nursery and garden area nearly on the same level as the floodplain bringing the hydrologics of the site to my attention.

That and the house being positioned up by the road, well above the floodplain.

I was dismissed with the report that county records had been consulted and there hadn't been a flood there since 18--.

Not long after they told me about having had salmon flopping around on the lawn, how a torrent of water had come down the hillside and through the pipe, and so on.

This was blamed on the new development up the hill.

Why would the county dig a big hole through the road base and fill it with a giant pipe if there was no previous history of problematic, large volumes of moving surface water?

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 7:49PM
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This is how it will go until the cities are abandoned sometime in the next century or possibly as soon as the end of this one: how to deal with a foot of sea-rise, and how many billions will it cost?

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 8:05PM
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david52 Zone 6

With the recent flooding in Louisiana, it sounded like all the new spiffy levees and what not around New Orleans worked just fine.

And forced the water out and into other areas that rarely flood.

But I think this is the discussion that the world needs to have - is it cheaper to gradually abandon the low-lying areas which would be flooded once every 15 -20 years or so, or try and build protection?

There is a current buzzword amongst the people planning for these coming events, the "resilience" of the population to weather-driven catastrophic events be they hurricanes, tornadoes, massive flooding, forest fires, etc.

Which boils down to how much money the population has to rebuild or protect.

IOW, poor people who live in disaster prone areas are going to have a tough time.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 8:14PM
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T - minus # 95 and drowning.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 11:07PM
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I have been squeaking about the liveability of coastal cities for years now.

the link will tell you waht goes underwater at what point...worldwide.

Here is a link that might be useful: This will scare you

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 3:58AM
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tobr24u(z6 RI)

Yikes! I'll float away with my rubber duckies!

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 4:45AM
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It's really going to make driving to north florida from here a pain in the butt at some point. I'm more worried about that than I am what happens to Bangledesh, or Manhattan.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 7:12AM
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well at least you are honest PNBrown , so I guess that is something.
You might change your tune when the refugees start coming.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 7:31AM
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IOW, poor people who live in disaster prone areas are going to have a tough time.

We had a customer in the Mohawk River Valley that lost their singlewide mobile home to flooding long before Irene.

They couldn't afford another mobile home so we were going to give them a used one, however the existing mobile home was grandfathered in. Modern codes and zoning laws prevented them from installing another mobile home.

Even if they could have installed another mobile home, they likely couldn't have afforded a new slab, excavation, fill, driveway, gravel, supports, tie-downs, well/septic, oil tank etc.

Oddly enough, post flooding they stayed a few nights in an old 25 foot cuddy cabin boat that was parked on the high ground.

I just thought it was odd that they parked the boat on the high ground and installed the mobile home on one of the lowest elevations of the property.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 8:42AM
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David, a lot of the planet's issues could be addressed simply enough... by our leaders admitting there is an issue with CO2 emissions and actually doing something about it, like seeking alternative energy and fuel sources... other than fossil based. We're quickly reaching the tipping point where rising sea levels and climate change cannot be held stable, and our planet's inhabitants will perish as a result.

It's an easy enough problem to solve, scientifically speaking, but for greed. There it is again... and it will be the death of planet earth.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 10:58AM
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More than likely I'll be dead before any of it manifests.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 11:06AM
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Some of the effects of rising sea-level are manifesting now.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 1:11PM
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Yes, PnBrown, and it's not just sea levels, but the warming of our planet as a whole. We can't expect our poles and surrounding tundra to remain frozen if we keeping flooding the atmosphere with pollutants that have a warming effect.

I'm reading a great book at the moment called "Storms of My Grandchildren" by James Hansen, one of our nation's leading scientists on climate issues, and what he says makes a great deal of rational sense. It's written in a way that makes all the science easy to understand from a layperson's point of view, and contains a ton of great information. Everything he has predicted to date, beginning back in the 80's, has come to pass and is now regarded as fact.

Unfortunately, special interests and politics will not allow for the information to actually be heard and digested by the public as a whole, coming from our leaders, and thus, we are stuck in a rut of greed that will allow the death of planet earth.

I admit to not knowing a lot about the more scientific and physical workings of our planet and its climate system before picking up this book, but it's really fascinating how our planet does work to maintain a semblance of balance through its various cycles.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 1:28PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Otherwise it - and we - wouldn't exist. Myriad independent phemomona happening to produce a working result. Now the phenomena are being messed with by one of the species involved, and things ain't working the same.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2012 at 1:55PM
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