Boston could have 18 days of high tide flooding next year, up to 70 days in 2050: NOAA forecast

Boston could face 18 days of high-tide flooding over the next year and up to 70 days by 2050, according to new forecasts, as ‘sunny’ flooding becomes more common due to years sea ​​level rise in the context of climate change.

The predicted high-tide flood days for the city from May 2022 through April 2023 are 11 to 18 days, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s updated forecast Tuesday.

This projection for Boston increases to 50-70 days of high tide flooding in 2050. Some of the most common locations for high tide flooding in the city include Long Wharf and Morrissey Boulevard.

“High tide flooding is becoming more common and damaging in many parts of the United States,” said NOAA Administrator Rick Spinrad.

“As part of NOAA’s work to build a climate-ready nation, we will continue to provide coastal communities with the information needed to anticipate, prepare for, and respond to increasingly frequent high-tide flooding,” he said. -he adds.

Floods at high tide are often called “sunny” floods or “royal tides”. Flooding is more common these days after decades of sea level rise caused by climate change. This occurs when the tides reach between 1.75 and 2 feet above the average daily high tide and begin to spill out onto streets or boil over storm drains.

As sea level rise continues, damaging floods are expected to occur more regularly, such as during a full moon or with a change in prevailing winds or currents.

High tide flood conditions along the East Coast are accelerating and coastal flood warnings are expected to become much more common in the coming decades.

“The East and Gulf Coasts are already experiencing twice as many high tide flood days compared to 2000, flooding shorelines, streets and basements and damaging critical infrastructure,” said Nicole LeBoeuf. , director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service.

“As sea levels continue to rise, NOAA is committed to working with coastal communities to provide the tidal information and tools they need to address the issue, now and in the years to come,” added LeBoeuf.

Boston recorded seven days of flooding at high tide in 2021. It was lower due to Earth’s position closest to the moon in a perigean cycle.

By 2050, nationwide high tide flooding is expected to occur 45 to 70 days per year. The long-term projections are based on sea level rise ranges of about one foot on average across the country by 2050.

NOAA continues to improve its ability to predict high tide flooding. NOAA maintains an ocean observing infrastructure, including more than 200 permanent water level stations on the U.S. coasts and Great Lakes, and is the national source for historical and real-time data, forecasts, predictions and scientific analysis for over 100 years.

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