Tens of millions of people already live in areas of the U.S. at risk of coastal flooding, with more moving to the coasts every year, the report noted. This population migration, combined with rising sea levels and other climate impacts, will increase their vulnerability and the risks of flooding for critical infrastructure affecting sectors such as transportation, energy, water and the military, according to the report. While coastal cities such as Charleston, S.C., and West Palm Beach, Fla., are likely to experience an increase in damaging high-tide flooding as sea levels rise, the report also warned cities further inland such as Camden, N.J., are increasingly vulnerable to flooding that could overwhelm sewer systems. “This is a global wake-up call and gives Americans the information needed to act now to best position ourselves for the future,” NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad said in a statement.
SHOW ME THE DATA!
The federal government report said high tides and storm surge heights will increase, propelling damaging waters further inland, increasing flooding rates and turning once-dry places soggy. ...The report emphasized near-term sea level trajectories because understanding future sea levels could inform planning and infrastructure decisions cities and towns make. It backed up a conclusion of the last such federal sea level study, that the increase would accelerate after 2050, but it scrapped that 2017 report’s most extreme projection of 2.5 meters of sea level rise by 2100 because “uncertain physical processes” such as ice sheet loss are now seen as less plausible in the coming decades than they were when that report was published.