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"The people who cast the votes don't decide an election; the people who COUNT the votes do." -- Joseph Stalin

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Global Warming Threatening California Coast

The Golden Gate

Global warming is a hot topic these days with most intelligent people agreeing that it does, in fact, exist. The main bone of contention is the cause -- is it natural or man-made? We're not going to address that question, however, proof that global warming exists is coming in from around the world. When it is ready to strike hard at the place of my birth, San Francisco, I feel it's necessary to address this issue and its impending effects on America. Here is the story:

(03-11) 18:04 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- Driven by global warming, the ocean is expected to rise nearly 5 feet along California's coastline by the end of the century, hitting San Francisco Bay the hardest of all, according to a state study released Wednesday. Nearly half a million people and $100 billion in property, two-thirds of it concentrated around the bay, are at risk of major flooding, researchers found in the most comprehensive study to date of how climate change will alter the state's coastal areas.

Rising seas, storms and extreme high tides are expected to send saltwater into low-lying areas, flooding freeways, the Oakland and San Francisco airports, hospitals, power plants, schools and sewage plants. Thousands of structures at risk are the homes of low- and middle-income people, the study said.

Vast wetlands that nourish fish and birds and act as a buffer against flooding will be inundated and could turn into dead pools. Constructing seawalls and levees, if needed, could cost $14 billion plus an annual maintenance cost of $1.4 billion, the study said. The study shows a greater sea-level rise for California than previous studies because it takes into account recent changes in glaciers and ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland.

Flooding projections

Researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey prepared maps of San Francisco Bay showing projected inundation, though they don't include the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. Calculations for inundation don't take into account existing seawalls and levees along the Peninsula and at Oakland International Airport.
Large portions of the Bay Area are at risk because European settlers in the 1800s filled shoreline marshes to build towns and cities.

Will Travis, executive director of the Bay Conservation and Development Commission, said the Pacific Institute study struck him because two-thirds of the projected property damage was in low-lying areas around San Francisco Bay. Cities and counties haven't planned for the rise, he said, and his agency is trying to build awareness.

"
We as a region have to get out in front of the state and nation in dealing with the problem. The study shows that low- and moderate-income people will be dealing with it. We have the equivalent of New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward."

Lessons from New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina are not to build below sea level, he said. But parts of northern Silicon Valley - where pumping groundwater in past decades has caused land to subside - are already below sea level, he said, leaving Google, Sun, Intel and other large company complexes vulnerable to inundation.

For complete article:  CLICK HERE
source:  SF CHRONICLE


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1 comment:

  1. The whole global warming scare is just government/corporate/media lies, the kind this website is against. sea levels have been rising at a constant rate for as long as we know of. Antarctica is actually cooling and gaining ice mass, greenland isn't melting any faster today then it has been doing in the past and even if the whole of the arctic melted (which won't happen any time soon) sea levels would not change significantly because it is a free floating mass. Most of the arctic ice melts every year in spring and returns in autumn and this does not effect sea level so why would melting caused by global warming?

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