UN climate report projects dire future for Gulf Coast
A new United Nations report released last week, which the UN secretary-general called an "atlas of human suffering," projects an increasingly volatile and chaotic future for those of us who live along the Gulf Coast.
Driving the news: The entire Gulf Coast is under serious threat from rising seas as the planet's polar ice caps melt, AP reports.
- The threats include more major hurricanes, red tides, collapsing fisheries and economic hits to industries like oil in Louisiana and tourism in Florida.
Zoom in: The report says the Tampa Bay area, surrounded by shallow seas, is considered one of the most vulnerable places in the nation for storm surges.
- The tourism and fishing industries in Florida need thriving natural habitats, but declining coral reefs due to warming water could translate into losses of $24 billion to $55 billion by 2100.
Of note: The report predicts that maritime heat wave frequency and spatial extent will rise faster in the Gulf and along the southeastern coast than anywhere else in the U.S.
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