Sea Level Rise

Sea Level Rise

As the planet gets warmer ice on land melts seal levels rise. This is a particular problem here in Florida where a great percentage of our population lives only a few feet above sea level. This exercise will help you understand the implications of a warming planet with rising seas.

Go to the website

http://sealevel.climatecentral.org/surgingseas/

90 points total

  1. Under the Risk Finder menu, choose your state (must be a state by the coast…if you do not live in a state by the coast, use Florida) and then enter your zip code (use zip code 33765…SPC Clearwater campus). You will see a map of your area with a five-foot rise in sea level; move it down to one foot.  Scroll down this page until you find the name of the nearest water level station.  (5 points)
  • Using the same page as above, what would be the projected sea level rise + mid flood level height for this area for the year 2020? To do this, choose the drop down menu under the title “What Are the Risks” (5 points)
  • Click on the Census 2010 link and find your county. What is its total population?  You will need to find the 2010 Census Data, scroll down to the interactive map and click on your state and then hover your mouse over your county to get the total population. (5 points)
  • Back to the Surging Seas website (same page as used in questions 1 and 2), how many people in your zip code would be affected by this one foot rise and what percentage of the population do they constitute? (Click on “Total” to change the values to percentages) (5 points)
  • Go back to the original page where you entered your zip code and enter your county (use Pinellas if you do not live in a coastal area). How many people in your county would be affected by this one-foot rise and what percentage of the population do they constitute? (Click on “Total” to change the values to percentages) (5 points)
  • Move the indicator arrow on the water level bar up to the five-foot mark – a possible indicator of what your area might look like by 2100. Observe what happens to your county! How many people might now be affected in your area by this five foot rise and what percentage of the population do they constitute? (5 points)
  • Scrolling down, how many people in your county are considered to have a high social vulnerability to this type of sea level rise? (5 points)
  • What is the property value of the land below 5 feet? Click on “Buildings” under “What Is at Risk”. (5 points)
  • Now move the indicator arrow on the water level bar all the way up to the 10 foot mark – a real possibility if the melting of the ice sheets of Greenland or Antarctica accelerates.  Which area of your local map is most impacted? (5 points)
  1. How many people might now be affected in your county by this ten foot rise and what percentage of the population do they constitute? (5 points)
  1. How much land (in acres) in your county is below 10 feet? Back under “What Is at Risk” and click “Land”. (5 points)
  1. How many miles of roads are below 10 feet? Back under “What Is at Risk” and click “Infrastructure”. (5 points)
  1. At any of these sea level rises, would you be impacted where you live? Why or why not? (5 points)

Using this website from EPA, answer the following questions. https://www.epa.gov/climate-indicators/climate-change-indicators-sea-level

  1. Since 1880, approximately how much has the global average absolute sea level risen? (5 points)
  1. What are the two main causes of global sea level rise? (5 points)
  1. Click on the second figure on this website. Using your area (use Pinellas if not by a coastal area), what has the relative sea level change been since 1960? (5 points)
  1. Using what you know about Florida and its karst geology, what part of it would experience the greatest increase in flood risk due to global warming? Why? (5 points)
  1. According to this figure http://www.globalchange.gov/browse/multimedia/projected-sea-level-rise-and-flooding-2050 what will be the approximate rise in sea level in 2050 in your area (use Pinellas if not by a coastal area)? Provide both values for with and without ice sheet melting. (5 points)
 
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