Sea levels are rising at an accelerating rate around much of the globe. Higher sea levels will translate to more frequent and higher coastal floods – especially in Florida.
Climate Central’s Surging Seas Risk Finder tool looks at 100 infrastructure, property, and population variables - such as schools, waste dumps, and roads – across Florida and the impact that sea-level rise would have on them.
Below are some key facts about Florida’s vulnerabilities to sea level rise:
2,120 sq. miles of land lie less than 3 feet above the high tide line
Property valued at $156 billion, including 300,000 homes, sit on land less than 3 feet above the high tide line
966 EPA-listed sites such as hazardous waste dumps and sewage plants lie on land 3 feet above the high tide line
The analysis was pulled from Climate Central’s Surging Seas Risk Finder for Florida. The second generation of the tool now incorporates high-resolution, high-accuracy lidar elevation data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. This new data allows users including planners and policymakers to take a more nuanced look at the impacts from sea level rise by zip code.
In addition to new lidar data, Surging Seas now also draws on population, infrastructure, and property analysis from a wide range of publicly available federal datasets. The Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute at the University of South Carolina conducted the social vulnerability assessment for the project.
This tool is also available for New York and New Jersey with the rest of the U.S. coastal states - including Alaska and Hawaii - coming soon.