South Florida Counties Prepare for Sea Level Rise

South Beach MiamiFour south Florida counties have joined together to prepare for sea level rise.

With so much of Florida barely above sea level, even a small change in sea level has the potential to impact Florida’s population.

Much of Florida’s agriculture depends on canals to drain storm runoff and unusually high tides. Unfortunately, in recent years, more and more storms and tides have been overwhelming the canals.

Similarly, beachfront cities need higher seawalls and improvements in their municipal drainage systems. Freshwater aquifers need protecting from saltwater intrusion or cities need to drill wells further inland to supply people with drinking water.

The four counties – Miami, Broward, Miami-Dade, and Palm Beach – are working together for regional solutions under the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact. Canals need to be updated the length of the system, rather than just a small area. Aquifers are another feature that crosses county lines.

Working together, the members of the Compact are effecting change across a wide region that will help agriculture, industry, and tourism adapt to an uncertain future.

South Beach photo via Shutterstock

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Author: Heather Carr

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