Dec 05 2013

Will You Be Underwater?

Published by at 7:20 am under Musings & News

Earlier this year NOAA Coastal Services Center and NOAA's debuted an interactive mapping tool showing the effects of sea level rise on the US coast.  I learned about the Sea Level Rise Viewer in the video above.

Though we're in no danger in Pittsburgh my family lives within 10 miles of the coasts of Virginia, Maryland, Florida, Massachusetts and New York so I was particularly interested in those places.  Alas, there is no map for Hampton Roads but the others are available.

Using the tool I zoomed in on a favorite birding location: Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge off Titusville, Florida.

One foot of sea level rise will put some of Merritt Island underwater and surround the access road from Titusville.  Two feet will make it impossible to cross from Titusville and will bury Blackpoint Wildlife Drive. Here's a screenshot of the two-foot rise.

Map of Merritt Island with two feet of sea level rise (screenshot from NOAA Climate Sea Level Mapping Tool)

Try the tool yourself.

  1. Watch the video above to see how it works.
  2. Click on this link to use the Beta version (my preferred version).
  3. A window will ask if you want to go back to the regular version. Stay on Beta by clicking the gray [Close] button at bottom right to make the window go away.
  4. Choose a place on the map using the controls at top right.  [Zoom to State or Territory] gets you there fast.
    Map controls for Sea Level Rise mapping tool (screenshot from NOAA Climate tool)
  5. Now use the controls on the left panel.  Move the blue sliding bar to make the water rise. (My red arrow below points to that bar.)  Watch what happens on the map.
    Map Controls screenshot, Sea Level Rise mapping tool (screenshot from NOAA Climate tool)


It's amazing what a little rise in sea level can do.  Some day Merritt Island will disappear.

(video and screenshots from NOAA Coastal Services Center)

One response so far

One Response to “Will You Be Underwater?”

  1. Chadon 08 Dec 2013 at 8:56 pm

    And then come the tides…

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