Key West Could Be Underwater by 2113
Florida Keys prepare for sea level rise
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 2, 2013 2:05 PM CDT
This May 2, 2013, file photo shows flooding on Duval Street in Key West, Fla., after roughly five inches of rainfall.   (AP Photo/The Key West Citizen, Rob O'Neal)

(Newser) – According to federal flood-planning directives, the ground floor of the Stock Island fire station in the Florida Keys should be built up 9 feet. Instead, county authorities went a foot and a half beyond that—just in case. Nearby parks, roads, and bridges also may be elevated. The sea level has risen 9 inches over the past 100 years, and it's expected to rise another 9 to 24 inches over the next half-century. As it rises, seasonal tidal flooding has worsened, and officials are trying to plan for it as best they can, the AP reports. Sea walls, like those New York is planning, won't really help because there are multiple factors at work, one Key West official explains.

"Our base is old coral reef, so it's full of holes," she says. "You've got both the erosion and the fact that (water) just comes up naturally through the holes." Officials are also trying not to scare off tourists as they prepare, although some projections for the next 100 years are pretty dire: They show the Keys and other parts of coastal Florida sinking beneath the waves. Part of combating the problem is fighting climate change. Reads one county's set of plans: "We clearly have the most to lose. If sea-level rise is not curtailed by immediate reductions in greenhouse gases, the Florida Keys may eventually become unlivable."

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Showing 3 of 64 comments
sucra
Feb 24, 2014 6:14 PM CST
it's one thing to peer review their data explaining the past (as mckitrik did the hockey stick graph and was impossible with the "lost" East Anglia U data) but there is a virtual 100% failure rate for their predictions so far, where the rubber meets the road. so in the next 50 years, sea levels will rise another 9", averaging .18" per year, and 1.8" per decade. I'm going to guess that the levels are going to rise faster toward the end of their prediction term according to their models, so it will be next to impossible to measure any progress toward a confirmation of their predictions until after their fake careers are over and they're retired on the beach in the keys. in 10 years if sea levels have risen .3" using debatable methods, will that be a confirmation that they know what they're talking about or proof they don't? no doubt they will be claiming vindication. they also discuss the natural life cycle of coral reefs, which the keys sit on, and downplay the sinking component compared to their focus on rising sea levels. if the islands are sinking, the process of building them up artificially will be a never ending process, no matter what happens to sea levels.
debbiedoodle
Jul 19, 2013 8:42 PM CDT
Yes, & I COULD be a virgin again in 2016
backpath2
Jul 16, 2013 5:25 PM CDT
If this keeps up, there will be no need for a fire station. You can't have fire in a drowned city.