Heavy rain and flooding in Hawaii have collapsed bridges, forced evacuations, destroyed homes and prompted the governor to declare a state of emergency Tuesday.
"I've just signed an emergency proclamation for the State of Hawai'i after heavy rains and flooding caused extensive damage to both public and private property across the islands," Gov. David Ige wrote on Twitter.
Ige said the extreme weather would likely last until Friday. The National Weather Service (NWS) in Honolulu said early Wednesday morning that all of the Hawaiian islands remained under a flash flood watch (one step lower than a flash flood warning) until 6 p.m. local time.
"Significant flooding may occur due to the overflow of streams and drainages," NWS warned. "Roads in several areas may be closed, along with property damage in urban or low lying spots due to runoff. Landslides may also occur in areas with steep terrain."
Heavy rainfall on Monday caused Maui's Kaupakalua Dam to overflow, NBC News reported. Initially, officials worried that the dam had been breached, but later determined it had not suffered any structural damage. Still, water levels reached about three feet below the top of the dam. This prompted evacuation orders for those living nearby.
Flooding on Maui also destroyed the Peahi Bridge and heavily damaged the Kaupakalua Bridge in Haiku.
"This has been unprecedented flooding, and we will be making damage assessments today," Maui Mayor Michael Victorino told KITV 4. "I ask everyone to stay vigilant and be safe."
Additionally, flood water damaged or destroyed at least six homes, and the Maui Fire Department received more than a dozen rescue calls from residents trapped in their homes. About 1,300 Maui customers also lost power, CNN reported.
Over on Oahu, two bridges in Wong's Village crumbled when a truck drove over them as water levels were about to reach the road. Evacuations were also ordered Tuesday in Haleiwa due to a stream flooding, CBS News reported. That order has since been lifted.
"When we do get rain, we get it all at once," the state wrote. "And that means more landslides, runoff, algae blooms, erosion, and flooding."
The number of annual floods has risen significantly since the 1960s.
On Monday, Haiku, Maui experienced 13.2 inches of rain between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m., CBS News reported. Maui residents were shocked by the rainfall amounts.
"I have lived here for 30 years, and I think this is the first time that I have seen so much rain," Makawao resident Lydia Toccafondi Panzik told KHNL, NBC News reported. "I've seen hurricane times, I've seen floodings, but this was really a bad one."
- Coral Reefs Provide Flood Protection Worth $1.8 Billion Annually ... ›
- Affordable Housing Flood Risk Is Expected to Triple by 2050 ... ›
- Homes Are Flooding Outside FEMA's 100-Year Flood Zones ... ›
- Worst Australian Flooding in Decades Forces Mass Mass Evacuations ›
- Hawaii Becomes First U.S. State to Declare Climate Emergency ›
Close to half a billion people could be in the path of sea level rise by 2100, a first-of-its-kind analysis has shown.
The study, published in Nature Communications Tuesday, found that 267 million people currently live on land that is less than two meters (approximately 6.6 feet) above sea level, the range that is the most vulnerable to rising water levels. By 2100, the number at risk could climb to 410 million people.
"These numbers are another wake-up call about the immense number of people at risk in low-lying areas, particularly in vulnerable countries in the global South, where people are often experiencing these risks as part of a toxic mix with other risk factors, currently also including Covid-19," Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) contributing lead author Maarten van Aalst, who was not involved with the study, told The Guardian in response to the results.
Beyond its urgent warning, the new study was notable because of how it took land elevation into account.
"Coastal flood risk assessments require accurate land elevation data," the study co-authors wrote. "Those to date existed only for limited parts of the world, which has resulted in high uncertainty in projections of land area at risk of sea-level rise."
To solve this problem, the Netherlands-based researchers used the first-ever model of worldwide elevation based on satellite LiDAR data. LiDAR is a method for measuring elevation by pulsing laser light down to Earth's surface, the Nature Publishing Group explained in a press release. It has not been used before partly because it is difficult to access for much of the world.
"In some countries like the Netherlands, or parts of the UK, and much of the U.S., they have excellent data for these coastal zones, because they fly Lidar every four years. It costs tens of millions of euros just to cover the Netherlands. Obviously in much of the world, people don't have that kind of funding," study author Dr. Aljosja Hooijer of the think-tank Deltares told The Guardian.
Finally using this data enabled the researchers to understand how many people were already vulnerable to climate-crisis-driven flooding, which is caused both by rising sea levels and increasingly severe storms, the press release explained.
The 2100 projection was based on assuming zero population growth and sea-level rise of one meter (approximately 3.3 feet) by the century's end, caused by a combination of increased ocean levels and land subsidence.
In addition to the study's overall findings, the researchers also investigated which regions are and will be most impacted. Risk is heavily concentrated in tropical Asia. Today, 62 percent of the most at-risk land is in the tropics. Indonesia stood out as the country currently with the most vulnerable land. Outside of Asia, the Niger Delta and Lagos were also vulnerable, Hooijer told The Guardian. By 2100, 72 percent of the people most in danger will live in the tropics and 59 percent in tropical Asia specifically.
For Hooijer, the study highlighted the fact that people around the world are already experiencing the impacts of climate change as it interacts with sea level rise.
"There's a lot of scientists looking at long-term scenarios. But it's happening now in parts of the world, and in these parts of the world, mostly in the tropics," Hooijer told The Guardian.
- Polar Ice Caps Melting Six Times Faster Than in the 1990s - EcoWatch ›
- 6 Cities at Risk of Chronic Flooding - EcoWatch ›
- Which Countries Have Lost the Most to Sea Level Rise? - EcoWatch ›
- Threatened by rising sea levels, the Maldives is building a floating city ›
While many homeowners are switching to solar power to help reduce or even eliminate month-to-month utility costs, there's no arguing that the startup cost of solar panels can be high. One way to save money upfront is with DIY solar panels, but is the challenge of building your own system worth what you save on installation costs?
In this article, we'll take a closer look at the pros and cons of DIY solar panel installation, including important safety factors and whether it's really guaranteed to save you money.
Each product featured here has been independently selected by the writer. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
DIY Solar: Considering the Cost Savings
To begin with, let's talk dollars and cents.
According to Energy Sage, the average gross cost of DIY solar system installation is $16,680. In other words, that's what you'll pay for your actual solar components, before taking into account rebates and other tax incentives.
By contrast, the average cost of having your installation done by one of the top solar companies can exceed $20,000 — and that's after tax credit incentives and rebates.
In other words, choosing DIY solar panels can definitely be less expensive. But why is this, exactly? When you go with a professional installation company, a big chunk of your overall cost is going to the design of your new solar power system, as well as labor costs. By eliminating those two expenses, you can shave several thousand dollars off the total price tag.
The flip side is that professional installers are generally able to buy solar panels, solar inverters and the best solar batteries from wholesale distributors, which means they can access a wider range of products and get them for lower prices than what's available to the general public.
In thinking about the cost of solar panels, it's also important to factor in the longevity of your system. After all, $16,680 is still a steep investment, so how much value can you expect in the long run? In general, a residential renewable energy system built with the best solar panels should last anywhere from 25 to 35 years. Average that out to 30 years, and the cost of installation can be annualized to around $556.
Pros and Cons of DIY Solar Panel Installation
Beyond price, there are a number of DIY solar energy pros and cons to consider before attempting to create your own solar panel system.
Advantages of DIY Solar Panels
Here are a few of the major benefits of DIY solar:
- DIY system design: Another main reason to consider DIY solar panels is that you have total control over the design of your system. So, if you're an amateur solar enthusiast, electrician or DIYer and have a very specific vision for how you want your solar array to be assembled, going the do-it-yourself route can give you free rein to do as you please.
- Cost savings: The most obvious advantage of DIY solar panels is the cost savings they offer. If you go for a DIY project, you'll be racking up the savings — both on your electric bill and solar system installation. By eliminating the need for design and labor expenses, you can potentially save a decent chunk of change on your residential solar energy system.
- Easing into solar: DIY solar panels can also be a really smart option for those who are looking to start small, with a more modest home solar project. For example, maybe you're not looking to go completely off-grid just yet, but want to try out a couple of panels to see how much they offset your energy costs. The DIY route can be very cost-effective, especially if you have low energy needs.
These are all notable perks to the DIY solar route, but there are also some drawbacks worth noting.
Disadvantages of DIY Solar Panels
While there are notable perks to the DIY solar approach, there are also some drawbacks worth noting:
- Product availability: One of the primary disadvantages of DIY solar panels is that you're much more limited in the range of products available to you. As mentioned, professional installers have direct access to the most efficient solar panels from leading distributors. As a consumer, your selections are going to be significantly more limited. In other words, there may be top-of-the-line solar panels that you can only get if you go through a professional installer.
- Potential safety hazards: DIY solar installation can be dangerous. To do it right, you need to be pretty knowledgeable about electrical systems and how solar panels work. Without that know-how, you run the risk of loose connections and other wiring problems. These issues can be real fire hazards, jeopardizing the safety of yourself, your home and your family.
- Efficiency issues: Professional solar installers have the knowledge needed to design a solar system that helps you achieve your energy goals. An installer can recommend the exact types of solar panels, roof mounts, inverters and battery banks you need, as well as the proper placement of those components. Without their expertise, you may wind up with a solar system that isn't as optimized or as efficient as it could be.
- Legality: In some municipalities, DIY solar panels may actually be illegal. You should always check with your local zoning board to ensure that you're even permitted to do a DIY solar installation, especially if you're planning a completely off-grid system.
- Navigating savings opportunities: Professional installers can help you claim all of the rebates and tax incentives you're eligible for. Identifying and securing these opportunities on your own can sometimes be a bit of a hassle.
The bottom line: Installing your own residential solar system can yield some notable advantages, including cost savings, but that doesn't always mean it's the wisest option. Due to the safety hazards, limited product options and lack of real solar expertise, many homeowners will conclude that DIY solar system installation just isn't worth it.
Get a Free Quote for Professional Solar Installation
Curious to see how much you'd save by opting for DIY solar panels vs. a professional installation? Fill out the 30-second form below to get a free, no-obligation quote from a top installer near you. By going solar, you could save up to $2,500 per year on utility bills and get a tax rebate all while reducing your carbon footprint.
Deciding Whether DIY Solar Panels Are Right for You
So after weighing the pros and cons of DIY solar, what are the next steps? One thing to keep in mind is that many solar installers offer no-obligation estimates. Even if you're leaning toward a DIY solar system, there's no harm in considering your options and learning a bit more about the solar installation process.
And if you do decide to go with DIY solar panels, one important step is to check local zoning ordinances to be certain you can legally install your own system. From there, start researching different solar panels, batteries and inverters, while also ensuring you have the right baseline knowledge regarding electrical work.
Homes in redlined neighborhoods are 25% more likely to be flooded, according to a report from the real estate firm Redfin.
Climate change, caused by burning fossil fuels like gas, oil, and coal, is increasing U.S. flooding risk, and the report is yet another example of the compounding harms caused by racism and climate change. Overlaying current flood risk assessments with maps of which neighborhoods were excluded from public investment via New Deal-era programs because of their high Black and immigrant populations — the racist practice known as redlining for the color in which those neighborhoods were delineated on federal maps — shows how the effects of those racist policies persist today.
"The discrimination that happened in the past may seem like it happened a long time ago, but it compounds," Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather told CNN. "It's not like the historical practices that were discriminatory diminished in effect. It seems like they actually increase in effect." The populations of redlined areas today are 58.1% Black, Indigenous, and people of color compared to 40.4% in places deemed desirable by lenders, the report found. The report comes as E&E reports FEMA is beginning to evaluate not just how disasters disproportionately burden low-income people and people of color, but how disaster response has exacerbated those inequities.
As reported by Reuters:
The study's authors pointed to a number of examples where communities of color suffered the most from storms.
When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, four of the seven zip codes with the costliest flood damage were at least 75% Black, it said.
And as sea levels rise and flooding becomes more common - with 2020 a record-breaking year for Atlantic hurricanes - there are concerns that financial institutions like banks and insurers will raise costs for the worst-affected households.
Jesse Keenan, associate professor of real estate at the Tulane School of Architecture, calls this "bluelining."
Much like redlining, he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation, institutions could begin drawing their own lines around neighborhoods at environmental risk, dictating the terms and availability of mortgages.
Therefore, he said, federal investment in infrastructure is urgently needed to help mitigate these risks.
For a deeper dive:
- Sea Level Rise Is Speeding up Along Most of the U.S. Coast ... ›
- Racism Is Adding to the Burden of Energy Bills, Report Finds ... ›
By Julia Conley
Although more than 90% of cities around the world report facing risks of flooding, drought, extreme weather, and other hazards due to the climate crisis, nearly half of the cities in a new survey reported that they have no plans in place to adapt to the planetary emergency, with one in four citing budgetary constraints for their inability to confront the crisis.
The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a global non-profit which runs the world's largest database showing disclosures from governments and companies regarding their environmental impacts, released the results of a survey of 800 cities which are home to 810 million people around the world.
The cities were found to be taking a total of 3,417 actions to cope with and mitigate the effects of the climate crisis, but chronic lack of funding from national governments has left a quarter of the cities surveyed unable to afford taking action, including planning green spaces, improving fuel economy to reduce vehicle emissions, implementing green retrofitting measures, and transitioning to renewable energy.
"Despite the progress cities have made to build resilience through risk assessments and adaptation planning, much more must be done to protect all populations from the worst impacts of climate change," the report reads. "For 74% of cities, climate change is increasing risks to already vulnerable populations ... Joining the dots between climate change and threats to water security, public health, and social equality is crucial to effectively address these issues and ensure cities remain resilient, prosperous, and healthy places for generations to come."
More than 420 cities reported that 1,142 climate projects require financing, demanding an investment of $72 billion — which, CDP said, should be included in recovery plans as the world continues to face the coronavirus pandemic.
To respond to the urgent impacts of #ClimateChange, cities need more funding. Our data shows that 1 in 4 cities f… https://t.co/9hNXh4akpJ— CDP (@CDP)1620841500.0
"As the world seeks to recover from Covid-19, recovery funds and stimulus packages need to focus on a green and just recovery," the report reads. "There is an opportunity here for cities to access funding and to implement climate projects focused on increasing resilience, protecting the most vulnerable and building an equitable and fair society. If Covid-19 recovery is not sustainable and equitable, we risk locking cities into infrastructure that is not aligned with the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals and a 1.5°C future."
According to The Guardian, Columbus, Ohio; Rio De Janeiro; and Southend-on-Sea, England are among the cities reporting budget constraints which have harmed their ability to prepare for the continued impacts of the climate emergency.
CDP global director Kyra Appleby noted that although 20% of cities surveyed said they face the risk of infectious diseases spreading, and linked the threat to the climate crisis — as several experts have — the need to ensure a green recovery appears to have eluded many policymakers.
"There are enormous benefits from adaptation and resilience, but they don't appear on the balance sheet," Appleby told The Guardian. "Only a fraction of recovery spending [from the coronavirus pandemic] is being put towards climate change, and even less towards adaptation."
Cities disclosing their environmental impacts and climate plans to CDP are "outperforming on urgently needed decarbonization compared to the global average," according to the organization, with 42% of their energy coming "from renewable sources compared to a 26% global average."
"To push their action further and faster," CDP said, "cities are seeking funding for projects in transport (16% of projects), renewable energy (12%), energy efficiency/retrofits (12%), water management (12%), and waste management (11%)."
According to the report, cities raised the greatest concerns about the climate emergency's effects on public health and water supply.
"Cities will require support from all levels of government, including partnerships with national governments to finance and achieve our global climate commitments," said Kelly Shultz, lead for sustainable cities at Bloomberg Philanthropies.
Reposted with permission from Common Dreams.
- Why Trees Are Necessary in Major Cities - EcoWatch ›
- Cities Face a Greater Risk of Heat Stress, Study Finds - EcoWatch ›
- Warning of Threat to 'Humanity and the Natural World,' Hawaii State ... ›
By Cameron Oglesby
As North Carolina heads into another hurricane season, some residents and organizations fear the stormy season will again flood communities with hog waste.
The state's hog waste management works by funneling feces, urine, and blood from hog farms into massive open waste lagoons, which let off foul odors and methane gas. When the lagoons become full, the waste water is often sprayed onto fields as nutrients for crops. The waste, which contains harmful bacteria like E. coli or salmonella, can wash off into local waterways and cause groundwater contamination and fish kills.
Hurricanes hasten this pollution. In 1999, Hurricane Floyd swept through the region, causing significant damage to swine operations and flooding waste lagoons.
"There is nothing outdated about the lagoon and sprayfield system," said CEO of the North Carolina Pork Producers Council, Roy Lee Lindsey in a statement to EHN. "It remains the most sustainable manner for us to manage our farms."
But the state, environmental advocates, and community members disagree. And Will Hendrick, environmental justice advocate for the North Carolina Conservation Network and staff attorney with the Waterkeeper Alliance's Pure Farms program, told EHN the industry has not made "meaningful changes" in response to increasingly frequent and severe storms.
Meanwhile, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting a higher than average hurricane season for North Carolina in 2021. On the Atlantic coast the agency estimates 16 to 20 major named storms, seven to 10 hurricanes, and three to five major hurricanes.
As climate change threatens to create more intense storms in the years to come, and with concerns over the location of hog farms in flood prone parts of the state coupled with lax regulatory oversight, how is the hog industry preparing for these increasingly devastating events?
Hog Farms in North Carolina's 100-year Flood Plain
In 2018, Hurricane Florence hit, leading to damage or flooding in at least 110 lagoons.
Waterkeeper Alliance Inc. / Flickr
Compared to other states in the southeast U.S., North Carolina's concentration of industrial animal agriculture in the coastal plain makes it uniquely vulnerable to storms. The region is number one for poultry farms and number two for swine in the U.S., and the majority of these farms are located in the southeast part of the state. There are roughly 2,400 hog farms in the state, many of which are family operations that work for corporate giants like Smithfield or Tyson Foods.
"This industry has concentrated in the most vulnerable part of North Carolina [for] these increasingly frequent and severe storms," Hendrick said.
The NC Pork Producers Council acknowledged this problem.
"Over the past two decades we've partnered with the State of North Carolina and closed lagoons located in 100-year flood plains," Lindsey said. Lindsey is referring to the voluntary North Carolina Floodplain Buyout Program, which has led to the permanent closure of 43 hog farms and around 103 waste lagoons from 2000 after Hurricane Floyd to summer 2020.
More North Carolina hog farmers would participate in the buyout program if there was more funding, Lindsey added. "This is a place where our industry and our critics could work together to secure additional funding and continue our efforts to reduce operations in 100-year flood plains."
In 2018, in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, Governor Roy Cooper included in his recovery recommendations funding for "either buyout industrial animal operations in the 500-year flood plain or to help them convert to better technology." From that recommendation, the legislature committed $5 million to expand the Floodplain Buyout Program. Data on these additional buyouts is not yet available.
But Hendrick said that funding for these buyout programs relies on taxpayers dollars, raising the question of whether North Carolinians should have to foot the bill for corporate mismanagement.
Communications director for the NC Pork Council Jen Kendrick told EHN that the hog industry has been "very proactive in what [it does] to prepare for hurricanes ever since Hurricane Floyd in 1999," providing an article, written by the Pork Council, outlining how the media and environmental nonprofits blew the impacts of Hurricane Florence on hog lagoon flooding out of proportion. The report said 98 percent of hog lagoons "performed as intended" during the 2018 hurricane and that state agency reports confirmed that hog farms were not a lasting source of environmental damage. Neither Kendrick, Lindsey, nor the article elaborated on what "performed as intended" means.
Hendrick said the report focuses on impacts to lagoons and overlooks "the significant pollution resulting from the runoff of their land applied waste." In North Carolina, Hurricane Floyd, Hurricane Matthew in 2016, and Hurricane Florence led to the failure of hundreds of waste lagoons, resulting in the contamination of waterways such as the South River and tributaries of the Cape Fear, Neuse and Tar rivers. This is not inclusive of runoff of waste from sprayfields, which can occur anytime there is a heavy rain.
According to a 2016 analysis by the Environmental Working Group and Waterkeeper Alliance, of the roughly 4,000 hog farms in the state, about 306 are located within the 100-year flood plain or within a half mile of a public well, the majority concentrated around predominantly Black and low-income communities in Duplin and Sampson County.
Hendrick pointed out that in an attempt to mitigate waste runoff, in 2019 the NC Department of Environmental Quality (NC DEQ) edited the swine waste management system general permit to increase the amount of time from four hours to 12 hours after a National Weather Service storm warning that a farmer is required to stop any spraying of waste onto fields.
"We see consistently, the farm operators are concerned about the accumulation of rainwater in their lagoons, so they begin land applying as furiously and fast as they can in advance of a storm," Hendrick said. "It's making it even more likely that the waste that they just land-applied is going to end up in our rivers, lakes, and streams."
In 2018, EHN witnessed seven hog operations illegally spraying waste onto fields prior to Florence's landfall.
EHN reached out to Smithfield Foods, the largest producer of pork in the country and a major North Carolina producer, for comment on their strategy to adapt to heavier storms in North Carolina. They declined to comment.
Hog Death During Storms
Sherri White-Williamson, Environmental Justice Director for the NC Conservation Network and a resident of Duplin County, a North Carolina hog farm hotspot, highlighted the additional problem of hog mortality and disposal during these storms.
"They don't get picked up on a regular basis... by the time they pick them up decomposition has already started and you can see the fluid from that decomposition dripping from the trucks on the road," she told EHN.
She said when these animals are collected, the flies, the odor, and other disease carrying vectors have already settled and create additional health concerns for nearby communities and for water quality.
The issue of hog mortality around concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) first came up in 2014 when the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDv) rocked the pork industry in the U.S. and Canada, leading to the death of millions of pigs. At the time, the Waterkeeper Alliance called out the haphazard handling of the dead hogs — which were disposed of in mass graves in what was often the 100-year flood plain — and brought forward concerns over groundwater contamination from the decomposing bodies.
Lindsey said that since Hurricane Floyd, storm-caused hog mortality has gone down. "Farmers and their partner companies work hard in preparation for storms to make sure our animals are cared for during a storm," he said, "Barns that are in flood-prone areas are cleared before a storm and the animals moved to higher ground. The results speak for themselves. We have very little animal mortality during storms."
However, during Hurricane Matthew in 2016, the Department of Agriculture estimated around 2,800 hogs died during the storm. Florence was worse, killing an estimated 5,500 hogs, along with more than 3.4 million chickens.
Hendrick also said that when it comes to the handling of animal mortality, it is once again the taxpayer who is "footing the bill" through the expansion of tax dollars to the Department of Agriculture to help with mortality management services.
North Carolina Hog Farming Regulation
Hendrick, and Communications Director for the NC Conservation Network, Brian Powell, pointed out that one of the reasons that the handling of these waste management systems has been so lax is because the DEQ's regional offices are less capable of responding to issues as a result of "draconian budget cuts" specifically targeting those offices.
"For instance, the DEQ Wilmington Regional Office, which would be responding to breaches or impacts in Duplin County, has seen a significant decrease in staffing as a result of decisions by the legislature," said Hendrick. In 2019, the nonpartisan environmental accountability nonprofit the Environmental Integrity Project found the DEQ lost 34 percent of its funding for pollution control programs between 2008 and 2018, resulting in a loss of more than 370 staff positions over the same period and making it one of the states with the largest budget cuts alongside New York, Texas, Arizona, and Louisiana. Adjusting for inflation, if the DEQ's budget had remained consistent over the years, it should have received $136 million in 2018 alone. It only received $80 million for fiscal year 2020.
Hog farms are required by law to get an annual inspection from the DEQ. But Hendrick said that because of staff cuts, the DEQ has trouble meeting that quota, oftentimes resulting in infrequent visits that last "less than 20 minutes," which is a fact that one of the DEQ's top officials in the inspection of North Carolina hog operations, Christine Lawson, admitted in the recent Artis v. Murphy-Brown nuisance suit brought against members of the hog industry. These annual inspections are separate from visits scheduled around specific community complaints, which Hendrick said consist of meetings where "operators are pre-notified and often scramble to demonstrate compliance."
EHN reached out to the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality's Division of Water Infrastructure that handles information on swine operation, but they didn't respond.
New Hog Farming Waste Technology
"The lagoon and sprayfield system was developed by experts at North Carolina State University specifically for the soil and water characteristics of North Carolina," said Lindsey. "It is the model for swine farms across the country. While we continuously look for ways to improve the system, it remains the best available option for our farms."
But Hendrick, Powell, and White-Williamson said that the only thing stopping the industry from dropping what the state considers an outdated system is their unwillingness to invest in superior technology.
"It's just a matter of acknowledging the recent history, and preparing for its continuation, instead of pretending like there's nothing to see here, there's no problem with the status quo, and as long as we continue to manage this waste in the way we have, there won't be any problems," Hendrick said.
Environmental advocates and residents in the state have been calling for a dismantling of the lagoon and sprayfield system, in favor of "environmentally superior technologies," such as a system called Terra Blue, which would replace open cesspools with closed tanks and reduce ammonia through the introduction of nitrogen consuming bacteria. Lindsey said that this technology was not economically feasible, despite its passing of all government and industry technical, operational, and environmental standards.
Others have pointed to Advanced Nitrification/Denitrification (AND) like major pork producer Smithfield uses in its Missouri operations to reduce the amount of ammonia coming off of cesspools. The industry has also looked to biogas investment as an economically viable alternative, though that comes with its own set of community and environmental health concerns.
Powell added that for increasingly intense hurricanes specifically, the issue also depends on the development of statewide storm and flood resilience programs. As North Carolina comes up on another hurricane season in June, groups like the Eastern NC Recovery and Resilience Alliance, a coalition of local governments created to better prepare the region for extreme weather events, have been calling for legislative moves that would fund a statewide flood blueprint, which would better position governments to address the technical aspects of flood mitigation, including predictive hydrologic modeling.
In March, the North Carolina Coastal Federation also came out with a blueprint for how communities could use nature-based flood solutions, including backyard rain gardens, watershed restoration, and strategies that limit impermeable surfaces like concrete or asphalt, to combat the projected increase in rainfall.
"To the extent that we begin implementing some of those solutions and coming up with a statewide flood management strategy, there probably will be beneficial impacts to agricultural facilities in addition to communities," Powell said.
Reposted with permission from Environmental Health News.
- Toxic Waste Ponds Dangerously Vulnerable to Climate Change ... ›
- The Storm Moved on, But North Carolina's Hog Waste Didn't ... ›
- In a Warming World, Carolina CAFOs Are a Disaster for Farmers ... ›
- Hurricane Florence Flooded Poultry Operations Housing 1.8 Million ... ›
- Early-Forming Ana Is First Named Storm of 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season (Which Officially Starts June 1) ›
Exceptionally heavy rain caused debris flows and flash flooding that damaged as many as two dozen homes and buildings in California's Salinas Valley on Wednesday.
In Paso Robles, unhoused people living in the Salinas Riverbed are especially in danger and local officials were working to alert them to the potential 20-25-foot rise in water levels. The heavy rains produced by an atmospheric river also caused flooding and knocked out power for thousands in the Bay Area and the threat of landslides and debris flows remains across the state after the state's record-smashing 2020 wildfire season.
The landslides are an example of the compound disasters made more frequent as human caused climate change makes wildfires more extreme and extreme precipitation more frequent.
As reported by KPIX:
The heavy rain triggered a mudslide in the River Road area near the Salinas River and Highway 101 south of Salinas. KSBW reported an estimated 50 large animals that were stuck in mud that had to be rescued.
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Monterey County confirmed Wednesday afternoon that it had taken in 41 animals for shelter due to people having to evacuate the area.
As of Wednesday afternoon, SPCA Monterey County had taken in nine dogs, 14 cats, 17 horses and a donkey for residents who did not have anywhere else to take the animals.
Anyone in the county who needs assistance with sheltering animals is asked to call the organization at (831) 373-2631 during day hours and (831) 264-5424 at night.
River Road has been closed by the California Highway Patrol from Chualar River Road north to Parker Canyon Road due to flooding and mud.
MCRFD working with local property owners on damage assessment In the River Rd area. Thank you to all the local ranc… https://t.co/7PgkagcJsV— Mont. Co. Regional Fire (@Mont. Co. Regional Fire)1611772018.0
The weather service said its tracking has the Big Sur coastline as the 'bullseye' for the storm front that has been intensified by the moisture from an atmospheric river.
"Our local in-house model is showing extensive storm totals in the Big Sur hills in excess of 20 inches with a bullseye amount in excess of 31 inches," the weather service said.
For a deeper dive:
Mudslides: King City Rustler, SFGate, Weather Channel, KION, ABC, KPIX, KSBW, Los Angeles Times, AP, Unhoused people: KSBY; Outages: San Francisco Chronicle, Atmospheric river: The Washington Post, AP; Climate Signals background: 2020 Western wildfire season, Extreme precipitation, Runoff and flood risk
The threat to affordable housing from flooding driven by climate change will likely triple in the next 30 years, new research shows.
The study, from Climate Central and the National Housing Trust and published in Environmental Research Letters, examined risk posed not just by extreme events like hurricanes, but also at the increasingly common threat of "sunny-day" flooding caused by sea level rise.
The threats driven by the climate crisis exacerbate the underlying affordable housing crisis — the study identified communities in which up to ninety percent of affordable housing is being put at risk.
The U.S. already lacks sufficient affordable housing, and "low-income renters typically have very few alternative housing options if a disaster damages their homes," Andrew Aurand, VP of research at the National Low Income Housing Coalition, told Thomson Reuters.
"When affordable rental housing is significantly damaged, the private market provides little incentive to repair or rebuild that housing to keep it affordable," he added.
For a deeper dive:
- James Hansen: Dangerous Sea Level Rise Will Occur in Decades ... ›
- Mangroves Threatened by Sea Level Rise Could Disappear by 2050 ›
- Sea-Level Rise Takes Business Toll in North Carolina's Outer Banks ... ›
- Heavy Rain in Hawaii Prompts State of Emergency ›
By Wesley Langat
Over the years, the Rift Valley lakes in Eastern Africa have been vital in supporting livelihoods of local communities who depend on fishing, farming and livestock keeping. Apart from being a UNESCO world heritage site, the lakes are also a major tourist attraction destination with rich flora and fauna.
But recent rising levels of water in the lakes have become disastrous, displacing thousands of people. One of those displaced individuals is 60-year-old David Maragoli, a father of three. Maragoli invested his savings into buying a piece of land and building a brick house for his family in the Borut village in Nakuru, 165 kilometers west of Nairobi – Kenya's capital city.
"I'm not employed anywhere, but all my savings from the hawking business, amounting to over 2 million KSh (USD 2,000), was lost here," he said.
Climate change is one of the present day global challenges that is continuously exposing millions of people to persistent accumulation of vulnerabilities and risks such as flooding, droughts and land slides among other natural disasters.
The 2019 Global Report on Internal Displacement shows that Sub Saharan Africa recorded 2.6 million people were negatively impacted by weather-related disasters, more than any other region and accounting for 36% of all displacements worldwide.
A few months ago, the shore line of the lake was almost one kilometer away from Maragoli's house, but in recent weeks waters have been submerging houses and farms at an alarming rate near his home. Maragoli said that drivable gravel roads in the village are no longer useful. People are now having to travel by boat as a new means of transportation to collect the remains of their homes, such as bricks, iron sheets and other building materials.
"It's so sad, some weeks ago, I could load my belongings into a truck just in the compound, but now it is not accessible anymore – only by boat," he added.
Even though the entire region of the Rift Valley is not experiencing heavy rain, several other lakes including Baringo, Naivasha, Bogoria, and Turkana among others are recording high levels of water, overflowing into the nearby settlements and displacing people, flooding farms, and destroying property.
John Hauwory, an independent consultant and geologist based in Nakuru, attributed these issues to the rapidly changing climate preceded by erratic rains, droughts and increased human activities in the watershed catchment areas.
"The anthropogenic activities coupled with meteorological activity in the Lake Nakuru basin and geological activities dispose the lake to flooding," said Hauwory. He added that the impact of human activities in the lake's catchment area has had a profound effect on the flooding risk.
Dickson Ritan, the assistant director of the Central Rift conservation area based in the Nakuru Kenya Wildlife Service Office (KWS) – a government agency, said that this year Lakes Nakuru and Baringo have recorded the highest levels of waters. He noted that the flooding in the lakes has not only affected livelihoods but also wildlife and tourism, most of the hotels have been closed down and the wildlife displaced.
"In almost all the Rift Valley's lakes, water level has risen considerably, engulfing riparian areas which were previously pasture spaces for wildlife like hippos and buffalos," Ritan explained.
He added that flooding is causing a serious impact on wildlife as most of them have been displaced. In Baringo and Nakuru, for instance, Ritan said that his organization is continuously monitoring the situation and has relocated the affected wildlife to flood free zones.
Reports indicate that floods in Lake Baringo have left more than 5,000 people homeless. The Kenya's National Climate Change Action Plan indicates that the economic cost of floods and droughts in Kenya is estimated to create a long-term fiscal liability equivalent to between 2% and 2.8% of the country's GDP every year. The costs of floods are estimated to be about 5.5% of GDP every seven years, while droughts account for 8% of GDP every five years.
Experts and geologists described the East Africa Rift System as the biggest rift on Earth. Its formation was as a result of hot volcanic magma separating the two tectonic plates creating Eastern Rift Valley and Western (Albertine) Rift Valley. Additionally, the formation of the great lakes of Eastern Africa is due to massive volcanic activities and depressions.
According to Hauwory, the Great Rift Valley lakes have diverse biodiversity that supports millions of people and wildlife. However, due to the fertile soil in the upper catchment areas, a large percentage of lands adjacent to these lakes experience intensive and unsustainable land use such as agriculture, infrastructure developments, deforestation and urbanization. Therefore, these becomes the source of erosion leading to massive uncontrollable sedimentation in the lakes.
"The soil has high porosity, permeability and loose structure, therefore, highly susceptible to erosion, land subsidence and fractures during or after heavy rain," he noted. He further pointed out that widespread sediment deposition storage in these lakes end up occupying a lot of space, forcing water overflow like in the case of Lake Nakuru which is shallow.
"Due to high gradient in the catchment area, such as the Mau Forest Complex, the rate at which sedimentation takes place is too high, considering that most of these lakes do not have outlets, so the underground seepage is gradually filled with silt," he said.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature shows that the Kenya Lake System is a habitat for endangered and threatened species. In addition, due to its alkalinity, Lakes Nakuru, Elementaita and Bogoria, enable the growth of food for wildlife. The biodiversity created supports approximately 75% of the global population of flamingos.
Ritan also revealed that the current rising level of water is a threat to aquatic life, like flamingos. In Lake Nakuru, water has already covered a 30 kilometer square area of land destabilizing the composition of biodiversity in the lakes.
"The water salinity has affected the growth of algae, mainly the red algae, which is the main food for flamingos," Ritan said.
"When these food resources are threatened, this means aquatic animals are also affected. In particular, flamingos will be forced to migrate."
He commented that his agency is doing continuous surveillance, as well as, sensitizing the public to tame human-wildlife conflict as a result of displaced animals. On the other hand, Hawoury pointed out their need for educating the public on sustainable land management, soil erosion prevention, and building flood controls in the lakes.
According to government officials, the government of Kenya has formed a multi-agency technical team to deliberate on the root cause of the problem. The team also will assess the environmental, social, and economic impact of the rising level of water in the region. In addition, they seek possible mitigation measures and a possible solution.
Wesley Langat is a freelance journalist passionately covering environment, climate change and agricultural reporting around East Africa and Horn of Africa. He is currently writing for various international media outlets including Thomson Reuters Foundation, Climate Home News, News Deeply and InsideOver among others.
Flood waters swamped Venice's iconic Saint Mark's Square on Tuesday, despite the implementation of a barrier system that was supposed to protect the city from the flooding events that are getting more frequent because of the climate crisis.
The water level rose to a high of 4.5 feet above sea level in the afternoon, AFP reported. This swamped St. Mark's Square, the lowest point in the city at only about three feet above sea level, as well as its historic basilica.
"The situation is terrible, we're under water in a dramatic way," the church's head procurator Carlo Alberto Tesserin told Italian media, as The Guardian reported.
The flooding came despite the fact that the city had finally installed a system of retractable flood barriers called MOSE. However, the system failed to activate because of a mistaken weather forecast.
MOSE is designed to close its barriers before high tides of 1.3 meters (approximately 4.3 feet). However, Tuesday's tide was only predicted to rise to 1.2 meters (approximately 3.9 feet), instead of the 4.5 feet it eventually reached.
"The situation is really bad as we weren't expecting it," Matteo Secchi, head of the activist group Venessia.com, told The Guardian. "It's frustrating as we thought that with Mose this kind of thing wouldn't happen any more, but instead we're back to square one. It's the same old problem."
The higher than expected tide was also driven inward by stronger winds than predicted, according to The Associated Press.
"Unfortunately, the weather is freer than us. It does what it wants," Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro told The Associated Press.
In addition to flooding the church, the water also inundated some shops and businesses. The damage is not yet known, according to The Guardian. However, the flood is likely to put a further strain on shop or restaurant owners already suffering from a lack of tourism due to the coronavirus pandemic, The Associated Press pointed out.
The MOSE flood barrier was first designed in 1984 and was supposed to be installed by 2011, according to The Guardian. However, it was beset by corruption and delays. It was originally supposed to cost two billion euros, but the final price tag was seven billion, according to AFP.
The long-awaited barrier successfully protected Venice from an approximately four-foot high tide in October of this year. Its final installation came about a year after Venice experienced its worst high tide in more than 50 years during November 2019, an event that Brugnaro blamed on climate change. There were only 10 "exceptional tides" in Venice between 1923 and 2000, but that number rose to 14 between 2001 and 2019, according to InsideClimate News. The November 2019 flood covered more than 85 percent of the city and killed two people.
MOSE consists of 78 barriers and is designed to protect the city from up to 10 feet of flooding, according to The Associated Press.
Brugano emphasized that the project is still being tested, and that lessons from Tuesday's failures will be taken into account. He said that protocols would be developed to activate the system more quickly. For now, the city is working to activate the barrier to protect itself from a high tide of 1.2 meters predicted for Wednesday.
However, some say the barrier can only ever be a short-term fix for the problem of climate change. Sea level rise is projected to swallow Venice by 2100 if nothing is done to lower greenhouse gas emissions, InsideClimate News reported.
University of Padua Maritime Construction professor Piero Ruol pointed out that even best-case-scenario projections for sea level rise would require the barriers to be shut more than six months a year, which would devastate the ecosystem of Venice's lagoon.
"Therefore, the MOSE can not be considered a solution that 'lasts forever' for protecting Venice from flooding," he told InsideClimate News, "and it is time to think of new solutions for solving this delicate conundrum, in the face of climate change."
- Venice: Third Exceptional Flood Makes Week Worst on Record ... ›
- Venice Flood Barrier Passes First Major Test - EcoWatch ›
About 70% of the buildings in Kalbarri were damaged and tens of thousands are without power by winds gusting over 100 miles per hour. Climate change, caused by humans' extraction and combustion of fossil fuels, is making cyclonic storms more extreme by increasing air and ocean temperatures, which effectively supercharges the storms.
"You just thought, this is it. I would have thought that when we opened the door, that there would be nothing around us except that roof," Kalbarri resident Debbie Major told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. "We are a small town. Half of it has been flattened." Seroja devastated regions of Indonesia and Timor-Leste last week, where it triggered deadly flash floods and landslides.
#CycloneSeroja: homes & units before & after the cyclone hit #Kalbarri, 170kmh gusts causing major damage. #7NEWS https://t.co/WYFL2QOlwB— Paul Kadak (@Paul Kadak)1618186830.0
For a deeper dive:
- As Extreme Weather Events Increase, What Are the Risks to Wildlife? ›
- 'Existential Threat to Our Survival': See the 19 Australian ... ›
- Cyclone Harold Batters Fiji, Tonga Could Be Next - EcoWatch ›
- 2 Killed, Thousands Evacuated as Cyclone Yesa Slams Fiji ... ›
By Rishika Pardikar
Search operations are still underway to find those declared missing following the Uttarakhand disaster on 7 February 2021.
"As of now [18 March], we have found 74 bodies and 130 people are still missing," said Swati S. Bhadauria, district magistrate in Chamoli, Uttarakhand, India. Chamoli is the district where a hanging, ice-capped rock broke off from a glacier and fell into a meltwater- and debris-formed lake below. The lake subsequently breached, leading to heavy flooding downstream.
The disaster is attributed to both development policies in the Himalayas and climate change. And as is common with climate-linked disasters, the most vulnerable sections of society suffered the most devastating consequences. Among the most vulnerable in Chamoli are its population of migrant construction workers from states across India.
Of the 204 people dead or missing, only 77 are from Uttarakhand, and "only 11 were not workers of the two dam companies," Bhadauria noted. The two dams referred to are the 13.2-megawatt Rishiganga Hydroelectric Project and the 520-megawatt Tapovan Vishnugad Hydropower Plant, which has been under construction since 2005. The flash floods in Chamoli first broke through the Rishiganga project and then, along with debris accumulated there, broke through the Tapovan Vishnugad project 5–6 kilometers downstream.
"Both local people and others from Bihar, Punjab, Haryana, Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh…from all over India work on these two [hydroelectric] projects," said Atul Sati, a Chamoli-based social activist with the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation.
Sati noted that the local community suspects the number of casualties from the Uttarakhand disaster may be higher than reported because not all the projects' migrant workers—including those from bordering countries like Nepal—have been accounted for by the construction companies and their subcontractors.
The National Thermal Power Corporation is the state-owned utility that owns the Tapovan Vishnugad project. "NTPC has given building contracts to some companies," Sati explained. "These companies have given subcontracts to other companies. What locals are saying is that there are more [than 204] who are missing. They say there were [migrant] workers from Nepal."
NTPC and the Kundan Group (the corporate owner of the Rishiganga project) have not responded to repeated requests for comment.
No Early-Warning System
"NTPC did not have a proper early-warning system," said Mritunjay Kumar, an employee with the government of the east Indian state of Bihar. Kumar's bother, Manish Kumar, was a migrant worker employed with Om Infra Ltd., an NTPC subcontractor. On the day of the disaster, Manish was working in one of the silt flushing tunnels of the Tapovan project and lost his life in the flooding.
Mritunjay Kumar noted that it "would have taken time" for the floodwater and debris to flow from the meltwater lake to the Rishiganga project and then to the Tapovan project. "Even if workers knew 5 minutes in advance," he said, "lives could have been saved."
An advance notice "would have given [Tapovan] workers at least 5–6 critical minutes," agreed Hridayesh Joshi, an environmental journalist from Uttarakhand who reported from Chamoli after the disaster. "Many people made videos; they shouted and alerted people on site. If there was a robust early-warning system, many more lives could have been saved…even if not all, at least some would have escaped."
"It is true that this was an environmental, climate change driven disaster. But NTPC had not taken any measures to save their workers from such disasters," Kumar said. "They [NTPC] hadn't even installed emergency exits for tunnel workers. The only proper exit was a road which faces the river. If NTPC had installed a few temporary iron staircases, many people could have climbed out."
Kumar noted that the Tapovan project has been under construction since before the 2013 Kedarnath disaster, in which more than 5,000 people lost their lives as rainfall-driven floods ravaged northern India. "If they [NTPC] knew that such disasters will happen, why didn't they install early-warning systems?" Kumar asked. "Scientists have been warning about climate change and [dam and road] constructions in the Himalayas from a very long time. Obviously, NTPC was aware."
This story originally appeared in Eos and is republished here as part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story.
By Emily Ury
Trekking out to my research sites near North Carolina's Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, I slog through knee-deep water on a section of trail that is completely submerged. Permanent flooding has become commonplace on this low-lying peninsula, nestled behind North Carolina's Outer Banks. The trees growing in the water are small and stunted. Many are dead.
Throughout coastal North Carolina, evidence of forest die-off is everywhere. Nearly every roadside ditch I pass while driving around the region is lined with dead or dying trees.
As an ecologist studying wetland response to sea level rise, I know this flooding is evidence that climate change is altering landscapes along the Atlantic coast. It's emblematic of environmental changes that also threaten wildlife, ecosystems, and local farms and forestry businesses.
Like all living organisms, trees die. But what is happening here is not normal. Large patches of trees are dying simultaneously, and saplings aren't growing to take their place. And it's not just a local issue: Seawater is raising salt levels in coastal woodlands along the entire Atlantic Coastal Plain, from Maine to Florida. Huge swaths of contiguous forest are dying. They're now known in the scientific community as "ghost forests."
Deer photographed by a remote camera in a climate change-altered forest in North Carolina. Emily Ury / CC BY-ND
The Insidious Role of Salt
Sea level rise driven by climate change is making wetlands wetter in many parts of the world. It's also making them saltier.
In 2016 I began working in a forested North Carolina wetland to study the effect of salt on its plants and soils. Every couple of months, I suit up in heavy rubber waders and a mesh shirt for protection from biting insects, and haul over 100 pounds of salt and other equipment out along the flooded trail to my research site. We are salting an area about the size of a tennis court, seeking to mimic the effects of sea level rise.
After two years of effort, the salt didn't seem to be affecting the plants or soil processes that we were monitoring. I realized that instead of waiting around for our experimental salt to slowly kill these trees, the question I needed to answer was how many trees had already died, and how much more wetland area was vulnerable. To find answers, I had to go to sites where the trees were already dead.
Rising seas are inundating North Carolina's coast, and saltwater is seeping into wetland soils. Salts move through groundwater during phases when freshwater is depleted, such as during droughts. Saltwater also moves through canals and ditches, penetrating inland with help from wind and high tides. Dead trees with pale trunks, devoid of leaves and limbs, are a telltale sign of high salt levels in the soil. A 2019 report called them "wooden tombstones."
As the trees die, more salt-tolerant shrubs and grasses move in to take their place. In a newly published study that I coauthored with Emily Bernhardt and Justin Wright at Duke University and Xi Yang at the University of Virginia, we show that in North Carolina this shift has been dramatic.
The state's coastal region has suffered a rapid and widespread loss of forest, with cascading impacts on wildlife, including the endangered red wolf and red-cockaded woodpecker. Wetland forests sequester and store large quantities of carbon, so forest die-offs also contribute to further climate change.
Researcher Emily Ury measuring soil salinity in a ghost forest. Emily Bernhardt / CC BY-ND
Assessing Ghost Forests From Space
To understand where and how quickly these forests are changing, I needed a bird's-eye perspective. This perspective comes from satellites like NASA's Earth Observing System, which are important sources of scientific and environmental data.
Since 1972, Landsat satellites, jointly operated by NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey, have captured continuous images of Earth's land surface that reveal both natural and human-induced change. We used Landsat images to quantify changes in coastal vegetation since 1984 and referenced high-resolution Google Earth images to spot ghost forests. Computer analysis helped identify similar patches of dead trees across the entire landscape.
A 2016 Landsat8 image of the Albemarle Pamlico Peninsula in coastal North Carolina. USGS
Google Earth image of a healthy forest on the right and a ghost forest with many dead trees on the left. Emily Ury
The results were shocking. We found that more than 10% of forested wetland within the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge was lost over the past 35 years. This is federally protected land, with no other human activity that could be killing off the forest.
Rapid sea level rise seems to be outpacing the ability of these forests to adapt to wetter, saltier conditions. Extreme weather events, fueled by climate change, are causing further damage from heavy storms, more frequent hurricanes and drought.
We found that the largest annual loss of forest cover within our study area occurred in 2012, following a period of extreme drought, forest fires and storm surges from Hurricane Irene in August 2011. This triple whammy seemed to have been a tipping point that caused mass tree die-offs across the region.
Should Scientists Fight the Transition or Assist It?
As global sea levels continue to rise, coastal woodlands from the Gulf of Mexico to the Chesapeake Bay and elsewhere around the world could also suffer major losses from saltwater intrusion. Many people in the conservation community are rethinking land management approaches and exploring more adaptive strategies, such as facilitating forests' inevitable transition into salt marshes or other coastal landscapes.
For example, in North Carolina the Nature Conservancy is carrying out some adaptive management approaches, such as creating "living shorelines" made from plants, sand and rock to provide natural buffering from storm surges.
A more radical approach would be to introduce marsh plants that are salt-tolerant in threatened zones. This strategy is controversial because it goes against the desire to try to preserve ecosystems exactly as they are.
But if forests are dying anyway, having a salt marsh is a far better outcome than allowing a wetland to be reduced to open water. While open water isn't inherently bad, it does not provide the many ecological benefits that a salt marsh affords. Proactive management may prolong the lifespan of coastal wetlands, enabling them to continue storing carbon, providing habitat, enhancing water quality and protecting productive farm and forest land in coastal regions.
Emily Ury is a Ph.D. candidate in Duke University's Program in Ecology.
Disclosure statement: Emily Ury received funding from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the North Carolina Sea Grant. Additional support for this project came from the National Science Foundation.
Reposted with permission from The Conversation.
- 'Ghost Forests' Are an Eerie Sign of Sea-Level Rise - EcoWatch ›
- Mangroves Could Help Save Us From Climate Change. Climate ... ›