SEA LEVEL RISE: A California Perspective Julie Thomas Coastal Data Information Program Southern California Ocean Observing System Scripps Institution of Oceanography May 3, 2011 “I’ve been plagued with worry over rising water levels, so….” Do our federal, state and local communities take sea level rise seriously? The Impacts of Sea-Level Rise on the California Coast by the Pacific Institute March 2009 110,000 people at risk in Orange County Population vulnerable to a 100 year Coastal flood with a 1.4 m sea-level rise • Flooding and erosion already pose a threat to communities along the California coast and there is compelling evidence that these risks will increase in the future. • In areas where the coast erodes easily, sea – level rise will likely accelerate shoreline recession due to erosion. • Recommend that Climate change must be integrated into the design of all coastal structures. Future development should be limited in areas that are at risk from rising seas. http://www.pacinst.org/reports/sea_level_rise California Coastal Commission: Current Approaches to Addressing Sea Level Rise Through Planning, Permitting and Partnerships Western Coastal Program Managers Meeting January 5, 2011 Michelle Jesperson, Federal Programs Manager California Coastal Commission Local communities are beginning to address sea level rise in their General Plans. Combined Effect of Sea Level Rise, Ocean Warming Events, Tides and Waves Elevation Maximum Potential Inundation Elevation 8m +Extreme Wave Runup 5m Episodic Risk Factors + ENSO + PDO 3m +Extreme High Tide Sea Level Today Ice Loss 0m Long-Term Risk Factors California Today California in 2100 Federal & State Sponsored Monitoring •Coastal Data Information Program (CDIP) •Southern California Coastal Ocean Observing System (SCCOOS) Coastal Data Information Program 35 years of monitoring Waves on the West Coast. Ocean Beach Feb 1983 Storm and El Niño enhanced sea levels during an extreme tide Collecting Shoreline Change data for Southern California • Predicting sea level rise impacts includes consideration of tides, wave height, terrestrial elevation and runup. LIDAR (Light Detection & Ranging) an optical remote sensing technology Elevation map Alamitos Bay Seal Beach Magenta = Sea Level Dark red = 5 m elevation Maps are available : cdip.ucsd.edu/scbps Data are available for download : http://www.csc.noaa.gov/digitalcoast/ Feb 2010 LIDAR (Light Detecting Radar) Elevation difference map Between Sep 2004 & Feb 2010. Alamitos Bay Seal Beach Dark red = 2m erosion Dark blue = 2m accretion CDIP – Assessment of Shoreline Change California Energy Commission – 2050 Report Selected low-lying areas were chosen for the Report depicting the effects of Sea Level Rise: Oceanside Del Mar Mission Bay Point Loma Coronado Imperial Beach San Diego Foundation Imperial Beach – 2100 (waves not included) Ca Energy Commision Imperial Beach – 2050 (waves are included) * Effects of erosion or accretion are not included. Photo: John Gastaldo / Union-Tribune During a January 2001 storm, Chris Hanzely employed alternate means of transport on Mission Boulevard in the low-lying beach area, while John Van Doren sought high ground to record the scene. Open Coast Flooding & FLOODING Erosion Risk Assessment : Pacific Region COASTAL & EROSION Automated Warnings of Highway Flooding Torrey Pines State Beach – Nov. 2001 Erosion problems now It WILL get worse How much worse?! El Niño + Large Waves + High Tides +Runup + Sea Level Rise Planning for Impact & a Resilient Future Environment Encinitas - 2002 – – – – Encinitas - 2011 Mapping/monitoring Comprehensive floodplain management Identifying land at risk Develop decision-making methodology to determine whether to: • Fortify or rebuild damaged infrastructure; • Reduce the footprint of vulnerable or damaged infrastructure; or • Abandon and relocate critical infrastructure. California Coastal Conservancy/Ocean Protection Council As baseline for planning, surveyed the California Coast with both bathymetric and topographic LIDAR, up to the 20 meter Contour Sept 2010 Partnering Organizations are in the process of surveying coastal communities to help build technical capacity to address climate change. • • • • • • Sea Grant Center for Ocean Solutions, Stanford University Susanne Moser Research & consulting California Ocean Protection/Ocean Science Trust NOAA San Francisco Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve • San Francisco Bay Conservation & Development • California Coastal Commission • RISA & SCCOOS March 6, 2011 SUMMARY 1. FEDERAL, STATE and Municipalities are starting to plan for Climate Change. Is it being taken seriously? 2. Sea Level Rise is one component that needs to be addressed. How to build resilient communities ?