Sea level continues to rise in South Florida (includes photo essay)

Sea levels rise is inundating in our coastal communities. Awareness of the issue is pivotal. It poses a threat to our infrastructure, water supply and lives. Why is this happening? Ice caps are melting, which causes the volume of water in the ocean to increase.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) explains on its website that “in urban settings along coastlines around the world, rising seas threaten infrastructure necessary for local jobs and regional industries.”

This photo essay showcases residential and business areas in South Florida that are potentially at risk of inundation due to the growing problem of sea levels rising as a consequence of climate change on our planet.
Sea-level rise threatens infrastructure near beach areas such as Surfside. This 70-year-old building near the beachfront, the Regent Palace, was evacuated after an engineer found structural problems with the columns in the parking area, most likely from saltwater rising from underground.  Presently, there are more than 4,000 people residents living near the beach.
Sunny Isles Beach is another coastal zone threatened by high tides and flooding. It is surrounded by major bodies of water including the Atlantic Ocean. Sunny Isles is extremely vulnerable to the flooding that is predicted to gradually increase in the next 30 years.
Storm surge in Sunny Isles invades roads and makes transportation challenging for residents. Sunny Isles Beach lies close to sea level and its underground water supply is just below the ground surface. This explains why rainwater has nowhere to drain. This area is considered a hazard area for surge flooding, which can rise up to two feet or three feet per second.
Located in the heart of downtown Miami, Bayside MarketPlace overlooks Biscayne Bay. Downtown is particularly affected by flooding due to high tides. An article published by “Forbes” states that Miami-Dade County has experienced up to 11 inches of rain at a time during hurricane season. Tourist attractions such as the “Sky Views Miami Wheel” can be affected.
Bayside Marketplace is a dining and entertainment tourist area with businesses. Downtown Miami has 12,127 residents. Scientists warn the area that in a few decades it could be underwater due to climate change. According to Dr. Harold Wanless’s research at the University of Miami, by the year 2060, nearly 60% of Miami-Dade County will be underwater. Not only are homes at risk but restaurants will be forced to shut down.
D’Nature Mineral, I Heart Miami and GameStop are shops that may cease to exist in the future. Bayside Marketplace is a central part of the downtown retail economy. Stores cannot afford to be constantly shut down, especially if they cannot afford it. According to “Leaf Score,” Miami sea levels have already risen a foot since the 1900s and show no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Property damage can be up to $135 billion.
Haulover Park is one of the many areas impacted by floods, The park opened its doors to residents in 1948. These days, floods are not uncommon in the park. According to a news article by CBS Miami, there is a $12 million plan to fix things from docks to flooding problems.
Miami coastal communities are bound to face inundation that endangers lives and property. Scientists predict that there will be 5 to 6 feet of sea level will rise in the future, it would displace 800,000 residents living in Miami Dade County.
10. As a result of the Sea level rising, water contamination is a risk factor in our seaside community. Miami Dade county has around 8,500 miles of underground water lines and 4,100 miles of sewer lines, available to residents.
Water pumps can reduce the effects of extreme stormwater. According to an article by “Pumps and Systems,” more than 99% of the population in coastal communities will have their homes underwater in the future.
Raising roads and bridges above sea level, such as Haulover Inlet Bridge, located in Collins Ave, helps minimize tidal flooding. According to the “Waterway Guide” this bridge is 32 feet high and covers 1200 feet horizontally.

Vanessa Garcia is a senior at FIU majoring in Digital Broadcasting with a concentration in English. Her hobbies include singing, making videos, writing, and reading. After graduation, she aspires to become an entertainment host/personality or radio personality. She hopes to leave a mark in the entertainment industry and inspire others along the way.

Maria Lozada is a junior at Florida International University majoring in Digital Broadcast. She has a passion for writing and editing videos. She looks forward to graduating and pursuing a career in the media industry.