New NOAA Report Predicts Rising Tides
In a new report set for release this week, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says rising sea levels are pushing tides higher and causing flooding more often. The report predicts a future where flooding will be a weekly event in some coastal parts of the country.
This new report sets out to give communities a clear guide to prepare for coastal flooding. “The numbers are staggering,” says oceanographer William Sweet at NOAA. “Today’s storm will be tomorrow’s high tide,” he says, referring to how high coastal water rises. NOAA has also found the rate of increase in tidal flooding is accelerating in about a third of the places it has tracked.
Cities like Norfolk and Miami, as well as the military, are planning on building sea walls, raising buildings and fortifying themselves, but they’re in a long race with a relentless rising tide that is picking up speed. A new zoning ordinance in Norfolk will require homebuilders to help curtail flood risk by using elevated foundations and following a point system meant to improve flood resilience. Norfolk needs to make $1.8 billion in infrastructure enhancements for flood mitigation, the US Army Corps of Engineers says.