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Climate change devastates Florida as Democratic candidates enter the debate phase



Unlike previous primaries, many Democratic candidates treat the climate crisis as an important campaign issue.

Many leading Democrats have stated that they have supported the Green New Deal, an ambitious and comprehensive set of policy proposals to combat climate change, or have proposed similar plans.

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yet Floridians involved in the debates are not aware of the effects of this environmental emergency limited to the forecasts of the scientists of the end of the century.

They are felt throughout the state at the moment.

Sea level is rising ̵
1; as are costs

Across the street from the Intracoastal Waterway by the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts The debates are taking place on Miami Beach's lively beaches and famous Art Deco buildings instead of.

But today the city is as well known for the effects of sea level rise as Ground Zero. Even the mayor of Dan Gelber, calls it a "canary in the mine shaft".

All of Miami Beach is deep, but parts are only one or two feet above sea level, making it vulnerable to floods in storms and extreme floods, according to Miami Beach City manager Jimmy Morales. Add the estimated 9 inches the sea level has risen in the region over the last 100 years, and you've got a recipe for costly flooding.

The porous limestone made from the remains of ancient coral reefs is comparable to Swiss cheese. According to Jayantha Obeysekera, the director of, natural subterranean "pipes" bubble water to the surface. The Sea Level Rise Solutions Center of Florida International University.

  A man tries to jump to a shallow spot as he traverses a flooded street in Miami Beach during the 2015 flood tides.

This geology has in Combining it with sea-level rise Parts of Miami Beach, Miami and other parts of the South are leaving Florida to deal with floods, even on days when it's not raining.

"We always had floods when it rained heavily in the tropics, but we never had what we call" floods on sunny days, "said Morales, who was born and raised in Miami Beach. "The sky is blue, it's a beautiful day, and yet water flows from the drains and seeps through the ground, and on the streets you can see inches of water."

Cities are taking action to counter these floods problems, but the Costs are high.

  The tidal wave of today is the tide of tomorrow, predicts a new report.
Miami Beach spends $ 500 million to tackle the most vulnerable parts of the city by raising roads and installing pumping stations to flood-prone areas 200 million US dollars flow into solutions for sea level rise and flood protection.
However, these millions will fund only a fraction of the work required, with sea levels expected to rise 6 feet by 2100.
] And if the increase continues to accelerate, as some studies have shown, it is unclear how I manage ong South Florida to solve this problem.

"There is a turning point where these solutions may not work," Obeysekera said. "But it's very difficult to predict when this tipping point will be reached, so I think it's wise to see how much longer we can go shopping with these solutions."

Red tide, failing septic tanks and hurricanes

[19659006] The rise in sea level is hardly the only danger posed by the climate crisis throughout the state.

A toxic red tide that began in 2017 clogged Florida's waters for more than 15 months, killing wildlife, causing respiratory problems for humans and costing the state tourism and fishing industry millions of dollars.
Red tide is nothing new in Florida, but warmer water due to climate change and nutrient runoff from farms is likely to exacerbate the problem.
Waste disposal is also a big chaos problem. Florida has an estimated 2.6 million septic tanks, or 12% of the nationwide total, said the Florida Department of Health. With sea level rise due to climate change, the water table is also rising, meaning that many septic tanks can not handle the waste properly before it flows into the groundwater.
  Record number of Americans who are very worried Report on climate change: Record number of Americans who are very worried

The health risk posed by the Drinking contaminated water is enormous, as well as the cost of solving the problem. A 2018 report found that the cost of converting the entire Miami-Dade County from septic tanks to a sewer system would be approximately $ 3.3 billion.

Then there are the storms.

Florida has always been exposed to the hurricane threat, but science shows that climate change is enabling it to drain more rain and create more damaging storm surges. Both are bad news for Florida's low-lying coastal areas.

If the climate crisis at previous elections was not a major issue for Democratic voters, a new CNN poll shows it has priority now.

A April CNN poll of potential Democratic voters found that 82% considered it "very important" that the party's candidate supported aggressive measures to slow down the effects of climate change.

For any candidate who ultimately assures nomination as Democratic President, they plan to address voters' climate concerns could be crucial to winning Florida and many other states.

Jen Christensen of CNN contributed to this report.


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