Tags: rising seas | military bases | union of concerned scientists | pentagon

Rising Seas, Military Bases Will Clash by 2050, Say Concerned Scientists

Image: Rising Seas, Military Bases Will Clash by 2050, Say Concerned Scientists
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By    |   Wednesday, 27 Jul 2016 01:57 PM

Rising seas will likely impact numerous U.S. military bases on the eastern and gulf coasts, resulting in more flooding and land loss, according to a study released Wednesday by the Union of Concerned Scientists.

The organization looked at 18 military bases along the eastern seaboard and the Gulf of Mexico, focusing on changes in their exposure to flooding through the end of the century.

"We're now at the front end of the changes that will occur, with some installations already dealing with flooding during extreme high tides," Erika Spanger-Siegfried, lead author of the report, said in the organization's statement.

"Depending on how fast sea level rises in the second half of this century, tidal flooding will become a daily occurrence in some areas; that is, those places become part of the tidal zone as opposed to useable land. This also depends on how installations respond and whether they have the resources to adapt."

The study predicts that the coastal installations examined will see 270 or more flood events per year by 2050, up from the current 10 events per year. The study states that nine of the 18 coastal instillations will likely face daily floods under the highest sea-rise scenario.

The examination went on to say that by 2100, eight installations would lose 25 percent or more of their land to rising water under its intermediate sea level prediction and 50 percent or more under its highest scenario.

"By 2050, most of these sites will see more than 10 times the number of floods they experience today," Kristy Dahl, the organization's consulting scientist and the report's co-author, added in their statement. "In 2070, all but a few are projected to see flooding once or twice every day. Shockingly, these aren't even the worst-case scenarios."

The Chesapeake Bay Journal wrote that sea level rise predictions by the Pentagon are "significantly lower" that the predictions offered by the Union of Concerned Scientists. For example the Bay Journal said the Pentagon predicts the sea rising one-quarter inch at the Naval Station Norfolk by 2050 instead of the 1.4 feet to 2.0 feet predicted by the UCS.

The Pentagon has voiced concern that it needs more resources and monitoring systems to improve its preparedness but the U.S. House appropriations committee last month passed an amendment blocking funding for the Pentagon's climate adaptation strategy, according to Reuters.

The bases reviewed were Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Maine; the U.S. Coast Guard Station Sandy Hook in New Jersey; the U.S. Naval Academy in Maryland; the Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling and Washington Navy Yard in Washington, D.C.; the Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Naval Air Station Oceana Dam Neck Annex, and Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia; Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune in North Carolina; Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island and Marines Corps Air Station Beaufort in South Carolina; Hunter Army Airfield and Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in Georgia; and the Naval Air Station Key West, Naval Station Mayport, and Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.

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Rising seas will likely impact numerous U.S. military bases on the eastern and gulf coasts, resulting in more flooding and land loss, according to a study released Wednesday by the Union of Concerned Scientists.
rising seas, military bases, union of concerned scientists, pentagon
498
2016-57-27
Wednesday, 27 Jul 2016 01:57 PM
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