Extreme high tides from now until Wednesday and again in February could give an indication of how this state will contend with rising sea levels over the coming years, according to Spencer Reeder of the Washington Department of Ecology.
It’s worth mentioning here because Ecology is asking average people to photograph conditions related to the high tide and provide the exact time and location of the picture.
“The agency is interested in using these images to help document the coastal impacts our state is likely to face with increasing frequency as sea levels continue to rise,” Reeder says in a blog entry on EcoConnect.
Precise times for high and low tides vary by location, but one can get a pretty good estimate by going to the tide prediction Web site operated by the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration and drilling down to the closest community listed.
Pictures can be sent by e-mail to Ecology, placing “sea level rise” in the subject line. Folks are encouraged to include contact information, so Ecology can send a release form to allow publication of the photos.
Weather conditions, such as wind and rain, can affect localized flooding and related problems, which is one reason to get as many varied locations as possible.
Reeder’s blog states:
“Increases in global sea levels have been recorded by NOAA tide gauges for many years, and more recent observations have been collected by NASA satellites. The steady rise has been attributed to both a warming of the oceans and contributions from melting glaciers and land-based ice sheets. Climate modeling combined with these direct observations suggest sea level rise will continue well into the future with significant implications for Washington’s more than 3000 miles of marine coastline.
“Analysis conducted by the University of Washington’s Climate Impacts Group and the Washington State Department of Ecology show that increases in sea level in Puget Sound could be as high as 22 inches by mid-century, with upper estimates of more than four feet of rise by 2100.”