Editorials

Time for NC to prepare for rising sea levels

Some conservatives have the following idea about the scientists and public officials who have been warning of the need to curb greenhouse gases that lead to climate change and rising sea levels: These alarmists just want to cause trouble and probably use the climate change issue to elect more liberal Democrats including Hillary Clinton.

But climate change “deniers” are a shrinking group, particularly as scientists the world over, including many with no interest in American politics, demonstrate that rising sea levels and wider variances in temperatures are a fact.

Now, a study through the National Park Service hits home with another consequence of climate change: expense.

In North Carolina, the study estimates a sea level rise of 1 meter, which is expected over the next 100 to 150 years, would cost $2 billion in lost assets along the coast, from buildings and other Park Service assets.

That would include things such as the Ocracoke Lighthouse, a pavilion and sculpture at the Wright Brothers Memorial, piers.

And some of these things, considering hurricane season, are pretty much at risk anyway, every year.

It also should be noted that the cost estimates probably are way low, considering what inflation could do over 100 years.

Conservatives who don’t recognize climate change as a reality scoff at all this of course. One hundred years? Why worry about that?

Well, what about the survival of families, of generations to come? What about the assets that have defined this state since its settlement? What about protecting, yes, this multitude of natural gifts that bless us all?

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