Whether or not you believe that climate change is real, scientists seem to agree that the sea is rising around Florida. Studies show that we could experience significant sea level rise within the next 20 years and the impact could be devastating. As many of our communities remain underwater following Tropical Storm Isaac, this level of flooding may be something we have to get used to unless we act now.

Senator Sachs discusses protecting our coastlines with members of the Beach Property Owners Association in Delray Beach.

Senator Sachs discusses protecting our coastlines w/ members of the Beach Property Owners Association in Delray.

In a recent study, researchers at Florida Atlantic University estimated that South Florida will need to invest in infrastructure to the tune of at least $500 million dollars over the next 100 years to combat the challenges that sea level rise will bring. Improvements will need to include stormwater drainage systems, septic systems, and the elevation of roads and bridges.

We will also need to ensure that our freshwater supply remains safe as saltwater contamination is likely to inundate our coastal areas.   Broward County is already taking steps by addressing the effects of climate change in its Comprehensive Plan. Senator Sachs believes the rest of the region and the state should follow its example.

“As a coastal community, we need to bring our scientists, engineers and government leaders together to address this issue bfore it becomes a real problem,” said Senator Sachs. “Sea level rise is happening right now and if we wait to act it could put our environment, our beaches, and our economy in jeopardy.”

A glimpse of South Florida’s future?  An aerial view of the flooding in Palm Beach County.

 

 

 

 

 

A glimpse of South Florida’s future?  An aerial view of the flooding in Palm Beach County.