sea level rise


The Mayor of Tangier Island James Eskridge got an unusual phone call yesterday afternoon.

It was from President Donald Trump.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the president made contact after seeing a report about the island last week on CNN.

Eskridge told the paper he got the call around 2 p.m. and called it “unreal”.

He said that the president told him, “You’ve got one heck of an island there.”

Eskridge told the president that the island residents were big Trump supporters.

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Governor John Carney announced that the First State has joined the coalition to fight climate change despite the decision by the Trump administration to pull out of the Paris climate accords.

In his statement Carney noted that Delaware is one of the most vulnerable to sea level rise with 381 miles of coastline.

He said that this could affect 17-thousand homes and 500 miles of roadways.

Delaware becomes the ninth state to join the U.S Climate Alliance consisting of states, Puerto Rico and local governments.

The sea level may be rising but the marshes along the Delaware coastline appear to be holding their own.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that mud and silt from the streams flowing into marshes appear to be keeping them healthy.

That’s the result of a new report that looked at 16 sites in the National Coastal Reserve System.

The report found that two marshes in Rhode Island and Massachusetts were the most vulnerable.

But overall it found that Atlantic marshes appear to be in better shape than those along the Pacific coast.

Don Rush

The Assateague State Park has decided to end the use of 8 of its campgrounds.

The reason: Sea Level Rise.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that it is part of the Campground Improvement Project -- an effort to boost the sustainability of the coastal barrier island.

The paper reports that five camp loop roads will be shifted 20 to 100 feet to the west.

That will mean 18 campsites will be moved inland while the other 8 will be closed.

The plan will require approval by the Critical Area Commission before it moves forward.

Don Rush

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia lawmakers are continuing discuss efforts to address the growing threat of sea level rise in the state's coastal areas, although any major projects are still far off.

At its first meeting this year on Wednesday, the two-year-old Joint Subcommittee on Coastal Flooding remained focused mainly on the possibilities of what can and should be done.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia has set up a new revolving loan fund designed to help property owners prepare for rising sea levels.

But the Virginian-Pilot reports that the fund has no funds and may not have any money for several years.

Still, Virginia Shoreline Resiliency Fund supporters say the program puts Virginia at the forefront of preparing for ways to help homeowners and businesses with rising sea levels.

The General Assembly approved the fund earlier this year and Gov. Terry McAuliffe signed the legislation into law.

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A report says islanders in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay could be among the first "climate change refugees" in the continental United States.

The research published in the journal Scientific Reports says residents of steadily shrinking Tangier Island will have to abandon their fishing community in about 50 years amid rising seas.

The author is David Schulte, an oceanographer with the Army Corps of Engineers. He calls Tangier a "ground zero" for climate change in the U.S.

Park Website

Sea level rise could endanger the $135 million in assets of the Assateague Island National Seashore.

That’s according to a recent report from the Department of Interior.

Some estimates put the rise as high as one meter over the next 150 years.

That, the report says, would overwhelm 95 percent of the park including roads, fences and the watering station.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that as a result park officials in Virginia have made buildings on the island moveable.

This would allow them to bring the structure further inland.

public domain

Restoration of the marshes at Prime Hook National Wildlife refuge is set to begin June 15th.

It will be the first step in a $36 million effort to fight rising sea levels along the Delaware Bay.

Work crews will create drainage channels followed by over a million cubic yards of sand to beef up the beach just south of Fowler Beach Road to deal with openings caused by Hurricane Sandy.

There will also be a dune with grass to preserve the area and provide time for some of the wetlands adversely affected by human activity.

Don Rush

Those on the Virginia Eastern Shore could find themselves stranded by water according to a new study on sea level rise of one foot or more.

The survey done with the assistance of the Virginia Department of Transportation found that some areas where there are now roads could be flooded out between 2025 and 2050.

The study found that around 25 percent of the roads along with communities and their facilities could be hit by sea level rise.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that 80 percent of the roads affected by the flooding are located in Accomack County.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Six university presidents have formally agreed to work together on challenges facing Virginia's coastal and ocean communities.

The Virginia Sea Grant charter was signed Monday in Richmond by the presidents of George Mason, Old Dominion, Virginia Commonwealth, Virginia Tech, the University of Virginia and William & Mary.

It takes millions of dollars to keep the sea level rise at bay for NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

That’s what Caroline Massey, the Flight Facility assistant director of management operations told the Accomack County Board of Supervisors this week.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that an estimated $9 million has been sunk into protecting key structures against sea level rise.

Some estimates put that rise at 6 feet or higher.

Massey noted that the facility suffered $3.8 million in damage after Hurricane Irene.

Don Rush

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - Virginia officials want to hear how Hampton Roads should prepare for rising seas.

The region is considered among the most vulnerable in the United States.

Virginia is attempting to get a portion of the $800 million available through the National Disaster Resiliency Competition sponsored by the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.

Specific projects could include elevating structures, building flood walls and tide gates and improving infrastructure and transportation.

Don Rush

DELAWARE CITY, Del. (AP) - A state panel is seeking public input on a report outlining how to prepare for and respond to potential climate change impacts in Delaware.

The Governor's Committee on Climate and Resiliency, which was charged by an executive order from Gov. Jack Markell, issued its report Monday and will accept public comment through May for possible revisions.

There’s a new flood map out by the state of Delaware.

And, it finds things could be worse than expected.

This mapping project says that the 100 year storm flood level could be three feet higher than expected.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that this would mean that places like the south end of Rehoboth Beach could be inundated with water within a hundred years.

The maps go far beyond those of the state’s sea level rise projections and those of Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Don Rush

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A panel charged by an executive order from Gov. Jack Markell with studying and preparing for climate change impacts in Delaware is eyeing a reporting deadline on its findings and recommendations.

The Governor's Committee on Climate and Resiliency, which meets Wednesday, is scheduled to submit its report by Dec. 31.

The committee's responsibilities include overseeing development of a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a way that benefits the economy.

Don Rush

Town officials of Fenwick Island are not going to be unprepared for sea level rise.

After receiving a report that shows the resort should expect an increase  in the sea level Mayor Audrey Serio said that the town must take off their blinders and take responsibility for responding to the worst case scenarios.

She added that preserving Fenwick and maintaining its safety were top priorities.

The URS report provided for the town said that solution could include nature based options such as oyster and coral reefs as well major structures like bulkheads and jetties.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The National Trust for Historic Preservation has named Annapolis a national treasure.

The new designation announced Thursday is intended to help protect Maryland's historic capital from flooding and other weather-related events.

Stephanie Meeks, president of the privately funded organization, says local officials have created a national model for how cities can plan to minimize the negative effects of climate change on historic buildings. She says the coastal city faces a double threat of sinking land and rising water levels due to sea-level rise.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware's congressional delegation is touting federal funding of about $7 million to help pay for projects that will help minimize coastal flooding along the Delaware Bay and improve wetland and beach habitats.

Members of the delegation planned to join state environmental secretary Collin O'Mara on Friday for a boat tour of Mispillion Harbor and the bayshore to view areas that will be helped with the federal funding.

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The historic city of Annapolis is one of 30 places listed by the Union of Concerned Scientists that faces threats from predicted sea-level rise.

The report was released Tuesday at a news conference in Washington.

The Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Monument on the Eastern Shore and the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis are also on the list. The report is titled "National Landmarks at Risk: How Rising Seas, Floods, and Wildfires Are Threatening the United States' Most Cherished Historic Sites."

South Bethany Beach website

The South Bethany Beach Town Council decided to postpone legislation that is meant to protect homeowners against flooding for more than three hours.

WBOC reports that the council was set to vote on the two ordinances on Wednesday.

A town committee presented their data at the meeting but the legislation was met with opposition who said they believe action was premature.

The ordinance would have required that all new at-risk homes add an additional three feet of elevation to the base of the structure on top of the requirement by the Flood Insurance Rate Map.

Don Rush


DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delawareans could soon see changes to a host of planning, construction, land use and environmental practices based on a report outlining the threat of rising sea levels on the state.

Members of Delaware's Sea Level Rise Advisory Committee presented a final report Thursday assessing the state's vulnerability to sea level rise. It recommended ways to protect transportation systems, water systems and low-lying communities.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delawareans have one last chance to weigh in on what the state should do about the threat of rising sea level.

State environmental officials are holding a final public engagement session to accept comments on options for improving Delaware's ability to prepare for sea level rise.

With the oceans lapping up further into the coastline a public meeting will be held this afternoon at Cape Henlopen High School in Lewes to examine the impact of sea level rise.

WBOC reports that this is the first such public meeting being conducted by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

They will help provide public input on the potential options developed by the state in meeting this threat and will give residents a chance to learn about the possible impacts to homes, infrastructure, natural resources and the economy.

Governor Jack Markell was sworn in yesterday to begin his second term in office.

His priorities include not only the state’s economy and education but protection of the state’s coastline against the warming of the planet.

In addition, he also emphasized equality and dignity for the First State’s citizens an apparent nod to an expected effort this year to legalize same-sex marriage.

There were few specifics in his remarks but he is expected to spell out more details in his State of the State address tomorrow.

Delaware’s Sea Level Rise Advisory Committee said that the public should look at whether property owners must disclose the vulnerability to potential buyers of the threat of sea level rise.

This would go beyond the current rule that requires sellers to let buyers know that the properties are located in designated flood zones.

The Wilmington News Journal would that this focus on predictions about the areas by the century’s end when the sea level could rise by as much 1 to 3 feet.

Hurricaen Sandy,

Hurricane Sandy may have been just a reminder of the impact of sea level rise as its storm surge crashed into the Atlantic Coast. On Maryland's Eastern Shore local government officials have begun to scramble to shore up the impact of the rising flood of water expected within the next one hundred years.  Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush prepared this report.

Sea Level Rise In Delaware,

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A newly released study shows that sea level rise is a statewide threat in Delaware.

A vulnerability assessment by Delaware's Sea Level Rise Advisory Committee concludes that all three counties and 31 of the state's 57 cities and towns would be directly affected by a rise in sea level.

The assessment found that 8 to 11 percent of Delaware's total land area could be inundated by a sea level rise of 1.6 feet to 4.9 feet, affecting up to 17,000 residences and 48 miles of roads and bridges.

Assateagye Island National Seashore,

There’s a new report out that believes Assateague Island National Seashore and several other national Parks along the East Coast could be underwater within the next 100 years.

The new 77 page report by Stephen Saunders, president of the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization and co-author of the report says that the future expects to see intolerably hot summers that could damage the tourism industry and harm wildlife.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that it also says to expect stronger coastal storm surges that could erode barrier islands like Assateague.


WASHINGTON (AP) — A new government study says sea levels are rising much faster along a stretch of the East Coast than they are around the globe.

The area covers the Atlantic Coast from Cape Hatteras, N.C., to just north of Boston.

U.S. Geological Survey scientists call the 600-mile swath a "hot spot" for climbing sea levels caused by global warming. Their study says that since 1990, sea levels in that region have been rising at an annual rate that's three to four times faster than the global average.