Sea Level Rise

NASA Aims for Space and Battles Erosion on Wallops Island

Apr 17, 2019
Pamela D'Angelo

NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore sits at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. 

It's a climate change hot spot, where rising waters and stronger storms are eroding about 12 feet of shoreline every year.  For NASA, science and persistence are major tools in climate resilience.

For neighborhoods along the Atlantic coast and the Chesapeake Bay, recurrent flooding that comes with climate change makes it hard to navigate, especially during seasonal high tides and more frequent extreme wind events like Nor'easters.

Now, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science has a tool to help people throughout the region prepare for a flood.

Pamela D'Angelo

You've probably heard coastal Virginia is sinking. That leads to more flooding, even on sunny days, because sea levels are rising, storms are stronger and currents are changing.

In the city of Hampton, high tides can block roads and creep into parking lots, yards and homes.

Sandy Hausman

As hurricane season draws to a close, Virginians who live on the coast may be feeling relief, but for residents of Tangier Island the threat of being overwhelmed by wind and waves remains.  They could become the first climate change refugees in this country.  This fall, the state promised to spend $3 million on a sea wall to protect Tangier’s harbor, but locals want a wall to surround their shrinking island.

Northam Signs Climate Change Executive Order

Nov 5, 2018
Pamela D'Angelo

During the past 20 years, Virginia has experienced a 250 percent increase in federally declared disasters. Citing those statistics and damage across the state from recent hurricanes, Governor Ralph Northam on Friday signed an executive order to protect state-owned assets and the economy by reducing the impacts of climate change such as tidal and storm surge flooding in coastal Virginia.

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