Superstorms Like Sandy Will Become the Norm, UConn Prof Says

That means shoreline residents in Connecticut may have to move or taxpayers will have to bear the cost of keeping them in their homes as sea levels rise.


As climate change continues to warm the earth, the rate of sea level rise is accelerating and more so-called "superstorms" like Sandy will occur, scientists are warning.

In Connecticut, that means shoreline communities will more often bear the brunt of these severe storms and may even have to move some of their denizens to protect against rising waters and life-threatening storm sturges, James O'Donnell, a professor of marine sciences at the University of Connecticut's  Avery Point campus told the Greenwich Times.

The situation could become a heated political one as shoreline towns seek more state and federal funding to protect coastal residences and businesses and those who live inland beging to balk at having to help pay those costs.

Just this week Congress approved $51 billion in aid for Hurricane Sandy victims. battering coastal communities and causing significant damage to the shorelines in Connecticut, New York and New Jersey.

After Tropical Storm Irene in 2011, O'Donnell said, he undertook a study of storm patterns "And what I found was that instead of getting a storm like Irene once every 20 years, it would be an annual event, more or less," he told the newspaper.

Connecticut has 618 miles of waterfront, including its coastline, inlets, sounds, islands and bays, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, stretching from Greenwich to Stonington. Some of that property is among the most valuable in the country.

O'Donnell said protecting those areas from rising waters and storms is possible, but costly.

"We can build wherever we want — it's a matter of money and environmental impact," he told the newspaper. "You'll have to weigh these costs and the benefits."


JackR February 02, 2013 at 11:57 AM
The sky is falling, the sky is falling!!! Just another academic ignoring the real objective data and citing the poor science and prevarications of those who use these claims as justification for their funding, while providing small minded governments the opportunity to self-rightously take more and more control of our lives. Regretfully, this charlatanism empowers the likes of Al Gore and other hypocrites that line their pockets with billions while making the US one of the most business un-friendly countries in the world. The sad truth is most Americans don't have the will or know-how to challenge these self-serving zealots so the government marches on and we end up with the likes of mercury laden CFL's and other "solutions" slapping us in the face each and every day!
M. C. February 02, 2013 at 01:29 PM
My H.I. just went up 21%
BL Davis February 02, 2013 at 05:31 PM
MC -- Call your insurance company. Homeowners Insurance does NOT PAY FOR flood and most hurricane damage. I believe the insurance industry is using the hurricane damages they are not even liable for as an excuse to raise premiums and boost their own profits. Unfortunately the "wathdog agencies" appear to be in the emply of the insurance companies. The public has to object en masse.


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