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Here's what rising sea levels look like


Daniel Martins
Digital Reporter

Saturday, July 13, 2013, 12:49 PM -

Climate change -- and rising global temperatures -- isn't a new concept, but when those sea levels really do start to rise, what would that actually look like?

Graphic artist Nickolay Lamm, writing for StorageFront.com, actually hand-picked a few locations along the U.S. coastline and digitally plunged them beneath the creeping tides, creating the images based on data and methods from Climate Central.

Lamm said he was inspired by a New York Times article featuring maps of major U.S. cities affected by climate change.

He selected a few stock photos, calculated their elevation using Google Earth, then added rising sea levels on the following scale:

- 0 feet, present day

- 5 feet (1.5 metres), 100 - 300 years from now.

- 12 feet (3.6 metres), 2300 A.D.

- 25 feet (7.6 metres), unspecified future.

Lamm drew up the east coast what-ifs earlier this year, updating them to include key west coast landmarks this month.

The results are ... sobering. Here's New York's Statue of Liberty as it looks now:

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

And here's the view at 25 feet, with Liberty Island completely underwater:

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

The west coast looks just as bad. Here's the San Diego Convention Centre today:

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

And here's the same spot with 25 feet of seawater added:

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

Credit: Nickolay Lamm/StorageFront.com, Data: Climate Central

The stakes -- at least in the long term -- are high. The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says coastal counties make of up 10 per cent of the country's total area, but are home to 39 per cent of the total population. That's more than 120 million people.

Directly referencing climate change, and mindful he was writing on a storage blog, Lamm said "unfortunately, there's no storage facility large enough to contain our planet's melting icebergs."

Lamm's graphic work periodically lands him in the news, most recently for showing what Barbie would look like as an average woman.

All images courtesy Nickolay Lamm and StorageFront.com

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