Document Details

What Threat Does Sea-Level Rise Pose to California?

Legislative Analyst's Office (LAO) | August 10, 2020
Summary

Among Its Other Challenges, California Continues to Face the Looming Impacts of Climate Change and Rising Seas. While the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‑19) pandemic and resulting economic impacts have rightly drawn the focus of the Legislature’s and public’s attention since March 2020, other statewide challenges continue to approach on the horizon. Among these are the impending impacts of climate change, including the hazards that rising seas pose to California’s coast. Scientific estimates suggest the magnitude of sea‑level rise (SLR) in California could be at least half of one foot in 2030 and as much as seven feet by 2100. Moreover, storm surges, exceptionally high “king tides,” or El Niño events could produce notably higher water levels than SLR alone.

Product Description

Among Its Other Challenges, California Continues to Face the Looming Impacts of Climate Change and Rising Seas. While the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‑19) pandemic and resulting economic impacts have rightly drawn the focus of the Legislature’s and public’s attention since March 2020, other statewide challenges continue to approach on the horizon. Among these are the impending impacts of climate change, including the hazards that rising seas pose to California’s coast. Scientific estimates suggest the magnitude of sea‑level rise (SLR) in California could be at least half of one foot in 2030 and as much as seven feet by 2100. Moreover, storm surges, exceptionally high “king tides,” or El Niño events could produce notably higher water levels than SLR alone.

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sea-level-rise-081020

Keywords:

climate change, coastal aquifers, flood management, infrastructure, salinity, sea level rise, seawater intrusion, water quality