Report: Global warming on sea level in Los Angeles will worsen coastal flooding

Jan 10, 2014 by Robert Perkins
High Tide Predicted
Residents of low-lying Southern California communities, such as San Pedro, would be most affected by flooding, according to a USC Dornsife study. Credit: Philip Belfer.

(Phys.org) —The effect of global warming on sea level in Los Angeles will worsen coastal flooding and erosion as major storms produce higher tides, according to a new study by the USC Sea Grant, housed at USC Dornsife's Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies.

Los Angeles, a metropolis perched on the edge of a coast, can expect to experience a rise of as much as two feet by 2050 due to climate change, according to current projections.

In anticipation, a team from USC partnered with the city of Los Angeles to gauge the impact of the rising tides on local communities and infrastructure. The results, according to a report released on Jan. 7, are a mixed bag, but at-risk assets can be protected by proactive planning and early identification of adaptation measures, the report's authors said.

"Some low-lying areas within the city's jurisdiction, such as Venice Beach and some areas of Wilmington and San Pedro, are already vulnerable to flooding," said Phyllis Grifman, lead author of the report and associate director of the USC Sea Grant Program, housed at USC Dornsife's Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies.

"Identifying where flooding is already observed during periods of storms and high tides, and analyzing other areas where flooding is projected are key elements in beginning effective planning for the future," she said.

Other key findings from the report:

  • The city's wastewater management, storm water management and potable water systems are highly vulnerable to .
  • The Port of Los Angeles and the city's energy infrastructure would be mostly unaffected by the rise in sea level due to a replacement schedule that will allow the city to prepare for future needs to change infrastructure.
  • Projected flooding and erosion damage to roads along the coast could impede emergency services.
  • Many cultural assets located along the coast, including museums, historic buildings and the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium, could face damage.

Residents of low-lying communities, such as San Pedro and Wilmington, as well as those with older buildings and high numbers of renters, such as Venice, would be most affected by flooding. In particular, the Abbot Kinney corridor and the fragile Ballona wetlands are at risk. But the region's wide sandy beaches, if maintained, can provide a valuable bulwark against higher waters, according to the report.

Explore further: New Jersey shore likely to confront unprecedented flooding

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Steve Case
3.3 / 5 (4) Jan 11, 2014
The article says:

"Los Angeles, a metropolis perched on the edge of a coast, can expect to experience a sea level rise of as much as two feet by 2050 due to climate change, according to current projections."

Somebody needs to do the arithmetic. Two feet (600 mm) by 2050 works out to an average rate of nearly 17 mm/yr in sea level rise. Tide gauge records for Santa Monica
http://www.psmsl..../377.php
and Los Angeles
http://www.psmsl..../245.php
go back 80 and 90 years respectively. Their rates of sea level rise hover around 1 mm/yr and if anything over all that time, demonstrate slight slowdown.

Rate of sea level rise in mm/yr since years listed:

Since .. L.A. .. Santa Monica
1924 ... 0.9 ... 1.4
1950 ... 1.0 ... 1.1
1975 ... 0.8 ... 1.1

The question that needs to be asked is, when is the 17 fold increase in that rate going to occur?

Steve Case
Milwaukee, WI
Whydening Gyre
3.7 / 5 (3) Jan 11, 2014
Were there any sea level DROPS reported during that period?
goracle
5 / 5 (3) Jan 11, 2014
Were there any sea level DROPS reported during that period?

And any movements of the land?
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (4) Jan 11, 2014
More AGWite B.S..

I've lived along the coast my entire life, and I don't see any beaches diminishing. The beaches I played on as a kid are, today, as I remember them.

And studying pictures from way back and comparing them to today shows no distinguishable differences either. In fact, many beaches have grown.

But the Western American coasts have long been rising and have had many past catastrophic upheaval events. Heck, it's not unheard of to find fossil whale bones in the mountains...

http://news.googl...8,843950

Maggnus
3.3 / 5 (3) Jan 11, 2014
I've lived along the coast my entire life, and I don't see any beaches diminishing.
Typical. I don't see it outside my window, so it can't be happening.
And studying pictures from way back and comparing them to today shows no distinguishable differences either.
No, see I can look at old pictures and they look the same, so it can't be happening.

Can you even hear yourself Ubamoron? The fact that tectonic activity causes the west coast to slowly rise says absolutely nothing about sea level rise. That this has to be pointed out to you says much for your scientific acumen.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (2) Jan 12, 2014
I've lived along the coast my entire life, and I don't see any beaches diminishing.
Typical. I don't see it outside my window, so it can't be happening.
And studying pictures from way back and comparing them to today shows no distinguishable differences either.
No, see I can look at old pictures and they look the same, so it can't be happening.

Can you even hear yourself Uba? The fact that tectonic activity causes the west coast to slowly rise says absolutely nothing about sea level rise. That this has to be pointed out to you says much for your scientific acumen.
Oh really? So then, what's it say about all the whining alarmists claiming the sea is going to inundate Los Angeles? You can't have it both ways, moron.
Steve Case
2.3 / 5 (3) Jan 12, 2014
Yes, you can't have it both ways. There is absolutely no evidence for the Los Angeles area to experience a two foot rise in sea level by 2050 as the article says. The game being played by people supporting the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW) view point is a classic bait and switch routine. Alarming numbers are produced by exaggerating data from satellites measuring absolute sea level and applying them to local areas where relative sea level from tide gauges is the appropriate value to use for planning purposes. Journalists and scientists engaging in this deception should be held responsible for their fraud.

Steve Case - Milwaukee, WI
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (2) Jan 12, 2014
Yes, you can't have it both ways. There is absolutely no evidence for the Los Angeles area to experience a two foot rise in sea level by 2050 as the article says. The game being played by people supporting the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW) view point is a classic bait and switch routine. Alarming numbers are produced by exaggerating data from satellites measuring absolute sea level and applying them to local areas where relative sea level from tide gauges is the appropriate value to use for planning purposes. Journalists and scientists engaging in this deception should be held responsible for their fraud.

Steve Case - Milwaukee, WI
Hear, hear!

Maggnus
3.3 / 5 (3) Jan 12, 2014
Oh really? So then, what's it say about all the whining alarmists claiming the sea is going to inundate Los Angeles? You can't have it both ways, moron.
You know, one thing about you Ubamoron, is that you are so consistently stuck in denialist mode, it's actually easy to just laugh at you.

What it says dumdum, is that the rise of the land from tectonic activity is much slower than the sea level rise resulting from global warming. You see, that there whale you're all on about died about 14 million years ago. The tectonic activity that causes the land in California to rise took about 14 million years to lift it up to that height.

Or wait, let me guess; you don't believe in tectonics either?
Maggnus
3.7 / 5 (3) Jan 12, 2014
@ Steve Case: well yes actually, you can have it both ways. Look at the explanation that Ubamoron will ignore above.

There is plenty of evidence of sea level rise: http://www.scienc...47.short
http://onlinelibr...ed=false
http://onlinelibr...abstract
http://onlinelibr...ed=false
and so on. Los Angeles faces issues due to the combination of rising sea level and it's own location.
Nice job though at describing your particular version of the conspiracy. Just another denialist.
ubavontuba
1 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2014
@Maggnusmoron
What it says, is that the rise of the land from tectonic activity is much slower than the sea level rise resulting from global warming. You see, that there whale you're all on about died about 14 million years ago. The tectonic activity that causes the land in California to rise took about 14 million years to lift it up to that height.

Or wait, let me guess; you don't believe in tectonics either?
You obviously know very little tectonics. Lift can be quite sudden (from a geological time point of view).

A lot is from crustal rebound after the ice age.

"These raised beach terraces in NW Scotland were formed originally at a much lower altitude -- below present sea-level. But they have been lifted by post-glacial crustal rebound to c 30m above present sea level. This uplift has outstripped the eustatic rise in sea level."

http://brian-moun...ges.html

Try learning a little science, why don't you?

ubavontuba
1 / 5 (2) Jan 13, 2014
@ Steve Case: well yes actually, you can have it both ways.

There is plenty of evidence of sea level rise:
But as Steve Case demonstrated in his first post, there is no evidence for the claimed catastrophic sea level rise along California coasts.

Maybe it's that you simply can't read, or retain content? Are you a chatterbot?

Maggnus
3.7 / 5 (3) Jan 13, 2014
Lift can be quite sudden (from a geological time point of view).
What has that got to do with it?

A lot is from crustal rebound after the ice age.
Around Los Angeles??

"Never argue with an idiot. He'll drag you down to his level and beat you with experience!"

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