Follow CBSMIAMI.COM: Facebook | Twitter
MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Troubling information from Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez about the possible impact of sea level rise to county-owned property.
A study delivered to the county commission says 46% of county-owned assets are vulnerable to sea level rise and worsening storm surge flooding.
The mayor says the county’s office of resilience is meeting with every department to discuss how to fortify properties.
County leaders are preparing for the sea level to rise about two feet by 2060. Leaders admit it could be far less or a lot more.
“This is serious business. It’s in the world news. It’s in the national news. It has serious implications in southeast Florida,” said James Murley, Miami-Dade Chief Resilience Officer.
Murley’s job is to get the county ready ahead of the impacts from rising water. Murley said people have been doing what he’s doing for years.
“We’ve learned how to manage the water when people first came here to begin development and we’ve been doing it ever since,” he said.
Wednesday, The New York Times published an article from the City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez about his concerns over the threat of rising waters.
“They’re beginning to think about how to upgrade our existing roads or how we should do any of our investments we are doing to provide services to our communities,” Murley said.
The coast is not alone. County leaders say rising sea level brings rising rivers and canals.
There’s already an aging drainage system that could be a problem since nobody predicted Miami-Dade being as popular as it is today.
“They missed our population growth by over 100 percent. There’s no way they could’ve envisioned what’s outside our window,” said Murley.
During an interview with CBS4, Murley said groundwater may be a problem too.
When saltwater is absorbed in the ground, it’s heavier that the freshwater. So, it could push groundwater above ground.
“This is a global problem and that if we are going to slow the rise, we need to encourage global solutions,” Murley said.
They will also talk about designing new projects with sea level rise in mind.
The study says a four percent budget increase is needed for projects vulnerable to sea level rise.
The study looked at more than 1,000 county properties.
The unified sea level rise projections can be found at http://www.southeastfloridaclimatecompact.org/.
And residents can find out more information about the Office of Resilience and what the County is doing to address climate change at https://www.miamidade.gov/green/.