sea level rise

Katie Lepri/WLRN

Some of the most dramatic sea rise around South Florida has occurred in the last two decades: at least five inches near Virginia Key since 1992.

If you want to know what climate change will look like, you need to know what Earth's climate looked like in the past — what air temperatures were like, for example, and what ocean currents and sea levels were doing. You need to know what polar ice caps and glaciers were up to and, crucially, how hot the oceans were.

NOAA

The Gulf Stream, the warm current that brings the east coast of Florida the mixed blessings of abundant swordfish, mild winters and stronger hurricanes, maybe weakening because of climate change.

Visible from the air as a ribbon of cobalt blue water a few miles off the coast, the Gulf Stream forms part of a clockwise system of currents that transports warm water from the tropics up the east coast and across the Atlantic to northwestern Europe. In the frigid climate near Greenland, the water cools, sinks and flows south again, rolling through the deep ocean toward the tropics.

Emily Michot Miami Herald

More than a week's worth of King Tides set a new record at Virginia Key, running higher than the high tides during seasonal tides that typically hit in the fall.

For the last eight days, each high tide has set a new record for the day, said Brian McNoldy, a University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science senior researcher. At it's highest, on Aug. 2, the tide reached 2.55 feet, more than a foot above the daily average of 1.33 feet. 

Sea levels are rising, and that is sending more ocean water into streets, sewers and homes. For people who live and work in coastal communities, that means more otherwise-sunny days disrupted by flooding.

Emily Michot / Miami Herald

Climate change is the story of Florida’s future. No other state has as much at risk.

That’s why six of the leading news organizations in Florida have formed a partnership to share stories and work together to report on the complex challenges of climate change. The founding members include the Miami Herald, the South Florida Sun Sentinel, the Tampa Bay Times, the Palm Beach Post, the Orlando Sentinel and WLRN Public Media.

Monroe County

A new report from a climate change advocacy group estimates the costs of protecting public infrastructure from rising seas. And the Florida Keys are facing one of the biggest bills.

Remember Boaty McBoatface? In the years since the naming snafu over a research vessel grabbed international headlines, Boaty has been off gathering crucial deep-sea data on the effects of climate change.

Now, the findings from Boaty's first mission are out — and they shed light on how Antarctic winds that are strengthening due to climate change are impacting sea levels.

But before we dive into what Boaty found, let's remember how it got here.

Pedro Portal

Replacing and refurbishing old coastal pumps to brace for sea level rise could cost South Florida tens of millions of dollars per year over the next decade.

In a report to South Florida Water Management District governing board members on Thursday, district hydrology chief Aki Owosina said a review of the 16-county agency found that 26 of the 36 coastal pumps would likely fail to do their job or be in danger of not working. The most vulnerable were in Miami-Dade, Broward and Collier counties.

Carl Juste / Miami Herald

A plan for the future of the historic Little Havana neighborhood was released Tuesday after two years of preparation. 

The "Little Havana Me Importa" effort launched in 2017 after the neighborhood was named a national treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Since then, more than 2,700 residents have given their input about the future of their neighborhood through workshops and surveys. The collaboartion is being led by PlusUrbia, the National Trust and private sector developers.

CARL JUSTE CJUSTE@MIAMIHERALD.COM

This story was updated at 4:30 p.m.

Three years after they joined the Rockefeller Foundation to create a grand plan to fight rising seas, climbing temperatures and other worsening climate hazards, three of South Florida’s most threatened places unveiled their blueprint Thursday.

Al Diaz / Miami Herald

After two and a half years of work, a comprehensive report on how to better prepare Miami for all kinds of threats -- economic, health and especially climate risks -- is expected to be released by the end of May.

The effort aims to better understand the risks to resiliency. That is the popular word used as a catchall for everything from dealing with housing affordability to recovering after a hurricane to protecting against and adapting to rising seas.

Arianna Prothero / WLRN

An international program that has helped South Florida cities address climate change and other livability challenges is ending. 

Sam Turken / WLRN

First-term U.S. Rep. Donna Shalala says she is working to address climate change in South Florida by pushing for Everglades restoration, carbon fees and federal infrastructure improvements.

Al Diaz / Miami Herald

A global conference on climate change resilience in Miami on Tuesday highlighted the city’s efforts to respond to sea level rise and other extreme weather events.  

Led by former United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, representatives from the Global Commission on Adaptation toured the city’s flood prevention projects and met with Miami’s climate resilience leaders. Ban praised the city’s work to address sea level rise, saying Miami is a model for other places around the world under threat from climate change.

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