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Major S.F. Bayfront Developments Advance Despite Sea Rise Warnings

August 13, 2015

a public press special report by Kevin StarkWinifred Bird and Michael Stoll : sfpublicpress – excerpt

Builders plan to invest more than $21 billion in offices and homes in flood-prone areas, where waters could climb 8 feet above today’s high tide by the end of this century 

Like every body of water that opens onto a global ocean, San Francisco Bay is virtually guaranteed to rise several feet in coming decades, climate scientists say. But that has not deterred real estate developers from proposing and building billions of dollars worth of new homes and offices in bayfront areas that current climate change predictions show could flood by century’s end.

Land-use records and environmental applications reveal that the building boom, fueled by a white-hot tech economy, is moving too fast for regulators to keep pace. Most cities and regional agencies have not yet adopted tools to address flooding in areas where thousands of acres are threatened by sea level rise.

Developers say they have engineering and financial solutions to deal with any reasonable future flooding risk. But critics, including climate scientists, urban planners and environmental activists, say the current wave of construction might leave taxpayers on the hook for enormously expensive emergency protections and repairs.

Researchers studying climate change predict that the rise in ocean levels will accelerate later this century as the atmosphere heats the ocean and melts glaciers. Many of their models show that by 2100, occasional flooding could reach as high as 8 feet above current high tide, in the event of a severe coastal storm.

Even the scenario widely considered “most likely” — 3 feet of permanent rise — would put thousands of acres of the current shoreline underwater… (more)

Many more articles in this publication on the subject of sea level rise.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. holeshothunter permalink
    August 13, 2015 7:09 am

    Verbal talks, (no math) Here’s part 1, the introduction https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lDZwJRSQVDo
    This is part 9, which is a 12 minute summary of the report https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKDWwASMeRw

    Like

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