Sea level rise

The world’s oceans are expected to rise at least one foot by 2050. Studies reveal that tidal flooding along the East Coast and Gulf Coast will become a chronic problem within 10 years. The American cities most at risk are New York, Miami, New Orleans and Washington, D.C. – with Boston and Tampa Bay not far behind. Many shorelines are also threatened by stronger hurricanes, coastal subsidence from building massive structures on sedimentary soils, and the destruction of wetland areas. Some say that, rather than building seawalls and other engineered coastal defenses, living shorelines may offer coastal communities the best protection from rising sea levels.

Living shoreline projects restore tidal marshes, coastal wetlands, barrier islands and other natural ecosystems that have traditionally served as buffer zones. Using natural materials such as plants, sand, shell or rock, living shorelines mitigate the impacts of shoreline flooding by reducing wave energy and decreasing erosion. Advocates say tidal marsh plants are amazing ecosystem engineers that can raise themselves upward if healthy and if there is sediment in the water. Scientists believe these natural buffers could keep pace with rising sea levels and provide continuing protection.

Proposed Legislation: Reintroduction of H.R.4235 - Living Shorelines Act (117th Congress 2021-2022)
Prospective Sponsor: Rep. Frank Pallone (NJ)

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Poll Opening Date
May 22, 2023
Poll Closing Date
May 28, 2023

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