Sea level rise projections dire: 'We’re on the worst-case pathway'
The Eastern Shore will experience higher than average sea level rise, a risk that will increase substantially over the next 100 years if global emissions are not cut in the near future, according to new projections from the University of Maryland's Center for Environmental Science.The truth? According to the NOAA Sea Level data base, water levels in Chesapeake Bay have been rising at a rate of about 3 mm per year (it varies a little from place to place) for at least the last 100 years:
"The Chesapeake Bay region is one of the places that is ground zero on the planet for sea level change," said Michael Scott, director of the Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative.
Some of Maryland's over 3,000 miles of tidal shoreline will experience near daily flooding by 2100 regardless of human's choices.
But those choices will have a stark impact on the long-term rate of sea level rise in Maryland, according to the report, which compared projections based on human emission scenarios for the first time in 2018.
"There are pretty sobering possibilities out there in front of us," said Don Boesch, one of the report's authors. "But the worst can be avoided if we do what the world is committed to and actually limit and stabilize the warming of the earth's temperature."
The projections were done by a panel of experts and are required every five years by state law.
Emission reductions don't have a significant impact on sea level rise by 2050, with estimates for all scenarios predicting a likely range between .8 to 1.6 feet.
There is no evidence for acceleration of that rate due to any recent warming associated with green house gas emissions:
and if you look at long term (50 years) averages of sea level rise, you can see we're are currently in a middling (albeit rising) period:
Get back to me when you can actually give good statistical evidence for a significant acceleration of sea level rise.
Yes, hard structures low to the water level will be affected, slowly. Houses and roads can be raised, and if there's enough interest, and money, land can be filled and raised, as had happened on Manhattan Island over the time period even as sea level rose as shown here: