Category Archives: Rising Sea Water

Letting Go doesn’t always mean giving up – in HBO documentary

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Short interview with the filmmaker that expresses a perspective that seems well worth considering! Cheers.

“Oscar-nominated director Josh Fox contemplates our climate-change future by exploring the human qualities that global warming can’t destroy.”

HBO:  How would you describe the message of How to Let Go of the World?

JOSH FOX:  I thought I was making a film about climate change, and then in the middle of it I ended up making a film about the stunning revelation that it’s sort of too late to stop a lot of what we think about as climate change. That we have to refocus our dialogue to be about humanity as we progress through the most difficult period of change that we have ever seen. Do we want to be known as the moment in history that was incredibly violent, that was incredibly insensitive, that created wars, starved huge sections of the population, was selfish, and was racist? Or do we want future civilizations to look at this moment as the time we completely changed the way our civilization operates?

Click here for Trailer.  Can watch on HBO-GO, HBO-NOW and HBO itself

Union of Concerned Scientist Report

Miami-Dade County, Florida (2045)

Union of Concerned Scientist has just published a new report on level rise and tidal flooding in Miami-Dade County.  The report focuses on 2045 – 30 years in the future.
flooded beach in coral gables, florida

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High tide leaves Matheson Hammock, a coastal park in Coral Gables, under water. With sea levels rising, large areas of Miami-Dade County will be at increasing risk of inundation within the lifetime of children today.

The consequences of sea level rise

flooding in Miami, Florida

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As the reach of tidal flooding expands and flooding becomes more frequent, an increasing number of communities, homes, and businesses will be affected, as will the daily lives of those who call this vibrant region home.

Miami-Dade County faces a number of sea level rise risks, including increased urban flooding, increased saltwater intrusion and contamination of drinking water supplies, and flooding of power plant substations and ensuing power outages.

By 2045, sea level in Miami-Dade County is expected to rise about 15 inches above current levels, according to a projection by the US Army Corps of Engineers.

With this increase, in just 30 years’ time, flood-prone locations in Miami-Dade County’s coastal communities would face roughly 380 high-tide flood events per year, and the extent of tidal floods would expand to affect new low-lying locations, including many low-income communities with limited resources for preparedness measures.

The flood events that today snarl daily life in parts of the county only periodically would become widespread and, on average, a daily occurrence.

As sea levels rise, higher water levels can also increase the extent and impact of storm surge and can permanently inundate some locations. About one-fifth of urban Miami-Dade County (namely, the area outside of the Everglades) lies at elevations that are within one foot of sea level at high tide; a one-foot increase in sea level is estimated to threaten up to $6.4 billion in taxable real  estate in the county overall.

10 Page Fact Sheet on Miami-Dade:

Shivaji Entrant Lisa Hirmer joins Confab

Shivaji Competition entrant Lisa Hirmer has been selected to join the Confab for one week in May.  Here is Lisa’s competition entry.


Lisa Hirmer is an inter-disciplinary Canadian artist whose work combines visual art, social practice, performance, design and art-based forms of critical research. She creates the majority of her work under the pseudonym DodoLab, an experimental practice focused on exploring and responding to the nebulous, complicated reality of public opinion (acknowledging this is itself a complicated idea). Through collecting, examining, illustrating, annotating, reconfiguring and disseminating this publicly-sourced material, DodoLab aims to not only explore collectively-held beliefs but also disrupt them. DodoLab is particularly concerned with barriers to adaptation and change, the instances where we know we need to change but are not able to do so—particularly those related to human ecological impact. Several recent projects, including Peak Peat (U.K, 2015), The Passengers (Canada, 2014), Lawns of a Speculative Future (Canada, 2014) and Beetle Gardens for Tough Times (Canada, 2013), have explored human relationships with the complex ecological realities of contemporary existence.




The Rising Waters Confab Report / Visual Book is complete.  Click here for the document.


Rising Waters Confab Report

2 Participants
3 Introducing the Rising Waters Confab | Buster Simpson
4 Captiva’s Outlook | Leonard Berry
5 In the Dry Morning | Gretel Ehrlich
8 How the Arctic Drives the Climate of the Temperate World | Gretel Ehrlich
11 What Happened 120,000 Years Ago Could Repeat | John Englander
12 Surging Seas | Climate Central
14 We Have Time to Adapt, but No Time to Waste | John Englander
16 Digging for Water | Glenn Weiss
18 Is it Fair? | Thomas Ruppert
19 How to Talk About the Climate | Florida Sea Grant College Program
21 Week Two | Jeremy Pickard
22 Climate Change Is Gradual | June Wilson
24 Commons at Ground Level | Anne Focke
27 Commons Reader | Anne Focke
28 Rising Waters Blog | Anne Focke
30 Who Should be Our Allies? | Orion Cruz
32 Agitprop at Rally | Buster Simpson and Edward Morris
33 Statues of Brave Heroes of Climate Change Skepticism | Lewis Hyde
34 Drowning Man Festival | Lewis Hyde with Others
36 5 Actions to Stop Rising Seas | Xavier Cortada
38 Captiva Island H.V.A.C. Wedge | Buster Simpson
39 Making Ice Bags to Refreeze the Glaciers | Xavier Cortada
40 Glenn Weiss, Jungle Seeds
41 Week Two | Jeremy Pickard
42 L’Arctique est Paris | All Confab Collaboration, Lead Authors Mel Chin and Gretel Ehrlich
49 Mangroves | Xavier Cortada, Walter Hood, and Buster Simpson
51 Removing Exotics | Xavier Cortada
Raked Free Zone | Buster Simpson
52 Pine Island Sound Expedition
54 Underwater Affair and Palm Column | Walter Hood
56 Hurricane Remodel…Hire an Artist | Lewis Hyde
57 The Graceful Retreat | Buster Simpson
58 National Midden Mound-ument Preserves | Buster Simpson and Andrea Polli
60 Rising Gas | Andrea Polli
62 Islands and Global Forces – Cretaceous-Tertiary Boundary | Andrea Polli and Buster Simpson
64 Voxel Frog // Mangrove | Buster Simpson
66 Limestone | David Buckland
68 Charcoal Sketch 2 for Neptune (A Play About Water) | Jeremy Pickard
72 SOS Life Float & Reliquary | Buster Simpson
74 Suggesting Palm Readings | Laura Sindell
76 Charley and Bob | Andrea Polli
78 Luxury Island and American River Archive | Edward Morris and Susannah Sayler
80 The Water Table | Jeremy Pickard
82 Pinhole Cameras | Laura Sindell
84 More Sugar, Dear? | Laura Sindell
86 Grounding Line – I’ve Seen the Water on the Wall | Lewis Hyde
87 The Manatees at Blue Springs | Lewis Hyde
88 Becoming Water | Gretel Ehrlich
89 Death and Poetry | Gretel Ehrlich
90 Fathom’s Portal | Buster Simpson
91 Stacked Chairs | June Wilson
92 Table to Deploy // The Arctic is Captiva | Buster Simpson

Shivaji Competition Open for Entries

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Please read and enter the Shivaji Competition.  Shivaji Competition seeks practical and impossible ideas to maintain human habitation on islands and deltas doomed by a one meter sea level rise in the 21st century. Submission as animated GIFs are due March 10, 2016.

Competition is authored by Glenn Weiss for the Rising Waters Confab 2016 dialogues.

October 25, 2015: Rains shows Alexandria’s future with Sea Level Rise

AlexandriaFlooding could become the norm in Alexandria, the World Bank has warned. It put Alexandria among the five cities across the world most at risk of flooding by 2050 as a result of climate change. The other cities the World Bank lists include Barranquilla, Colombia; Naples, Italy; Sapporo, Japan; and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

Low-lying Alexandria is also vulnerable to increased salination, or saltwater intrusions on agricultural lands and freshwater resources, according to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The city’s beaches and waterfront — both major tourist draws and vital parts of Alexandria’s economy — will be heavily affected by flooding because most of the hotels, camps and youth hostels are close to the shoreline, the IPCC said.

Alexandria’s beaches would be lost with a 50-centimeter (20-inch) rise in sea level, the IPCC has warned, and the United Nations’ Framework Convention on Climate Change expects that increase on Egypt’s coast by the end of the century. Just a 25-centimeter rise in sea level would displace 60 percent of Alexandria’s population of 4 million, and a 50-centimeter rise would force out millions more in the fertile Nile Delta, which produces half of Egypt’s crops and is vulnerable to saltwater intrusion as sea levels rise, according to the IPCC.

Report from 


What will vanish first—the island or its people?

Chesapeake Bay…………..

Smith Island comprises the wildlife refuge and a stretch of islands directly south, where roughly 280 residents live in three small villages about five feet above sea level. But erosion nips away at Smith Island’s banks at a rate of roughly two feet each year, and a 2008 report predicted that by 2100 Smith Island will be “almost completely under water as the Bay’s average level goes up nearly one foot.”

Which is why, even though Smith Island emerged relatively unscathed after Hurricane Sandy hit in 2012, the state’s Department of Housing and Community Development offered Smith Island residents a buyout to move. Most rejected the offer. Some, like Marshall, don’t believe there’s any risk to living on the island. “The whole sea-level rise—it’s BS,” he says, talking loudly over the boat’s motor. “I’ve lived here my whole life and haven’t seen a difference,” he continues, then shakes his head at excavators on barges piling gray stone in front of the refuge’s outer bank. Other Smith Islanders wondered why the state didn’t offer to pay for new protective seawalls and jetties and dredging projects to pile up sediment on the land they believe can be saved.

Most Smith Islanders believe the island can be saved—if there’s the money to do it. There are already some man-made defenses built around the island’s shorelines: A jetty protects the western side of Ewell; a bulkhead and riprap—piled stone that acts as a barrier between a coastline and waves—shield Tylerton. But over on Rhodes Point, on Smith Island’s west side, a narrow island that acts as a barricade between the village and the Chesapeake is eroding away. While a jetty project designed by the Army Corps of Engineers is ready to go, federal and state funding to construct it has yet to be appropriated.