Claim: Cost of not adapting to climate change would be at least five times higher

A study on damage to coastal considered only real estate loss. If nothing is done, researchers say, losses might be up to ten times higher if the predicament includes the spreading of flood- and global warming -related diseases.


Coastal cities deal with the constant fear that sea levels should continue to rise in the years ahead due to climate change. In the case of Santos, home of Latin American’s biggest harbor, a study supported by the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) estimated that, by 2100, sea level might be 45 cm higher and not only will storm surges be more frequent, but they will reach peaks that might surpass current peak levels in 20 cm.

A study on damage to coastal considered only real estate loss. If nothing is done, researchers say, losses might be up to ten times higher if the predicament includes the spreading of flood- and global warming -related diseases. CREDIT Agência FAPESP

Co-supported by the Belmont Forum – a global initiative that also design adaptive strategies in the coastal locations of Selsey (United Kingdom city) and Broward (a county in Florida, US) – the study titled Project Metropolis defined minimum costs so that Santos may adapt itself for what’s ahead: approximately R$ 300 million worth of urban infrastructure renovations in Ponta da Praia area and also in its Northwest region. On the other hand, failure to adapt to climate change would cost at least R$1.5 billion

“However, the cost could be underestimated at R$1.5 billion because the model only considers physical buildings and other structures, and the calculations are based on their imputed or taxable values. If we included losses in other areas, such as health and education, for example, the value would easily reach R$3 billion,” said José Marengo, coordinator of Project Metropolis (

Luiz Eduardo Oliveira e Cruz de Aragão, an investigator at Brazil’s National Space Research Institute (Inpe) and also a member of the project, sheds light on the broad impact of climate change on the health sector. Risk analysis and the investigation of adaptive strategies, according to Aragão, identified a connection between El Niño and the rising number of dengue cases in the summers of 2010 and 2015 – in these years, the expenditure on patient hospitalizations and treatments in Santos rose by at least R$720,000.

“We estimated some of the impacts on health, but if all diseases linked to rising temperatures and flooding are factored in, we can see the real impact of this problem in the area of health,” said the researcher.

Future scenario points to the increase of floods

Sea levels in Santos have risen at different rates since the 1940s. “Based on time series, we identified two possible scenarios for the city. One is more realistic, with sea levels rising by 0.36 cm per year. The other is the worst-case scenario, with sea levels rising by 0.45 cm per year. The conclusion was that sea levels could rise between 18 cm and 23 cm by 2050, and between 36 cm-45 cm by 2100,” said Celia Regina de Gouveia Souza, a researcher at the Geologic Institute (IG) of the Sao Paulo State a member of the project team.

The model also considers the occurrence of extreme events, such as meteorological tides and storm surges, which are increasingly frequent because of climate change and result in rapid rises in sea level.

According to Gouveia Souza, who maintains a database of the occurrences of extreme events harking back to the late twenties (1928-2016) in the whole Santos city area (the so-called Baixada Santista region), the frequency of storm surges has increased significantly, as has the number of consecutive years with storm surges, since the late 1990s.

“The Santos tide gauge data tables show that the peak rise during one of these extreme events in the 2000s was 146 cm,” she said. “According to our projections, it could reach 160 cm in 2050 and 166 cm in 2100. This means that the city will be even more vulnerable to coastal floods and erosion, which will migrate toward Bairro do Embaré (Canal 4 surroundings).”

Having produced the coastal flooding scenarios for 2050 and 2100 and having calculated the potential damages to buildings, the researchers shared their findings with the population of Santos and the local government to discuss appropriate adaptive measures.

“Options for adaptation were brought up at these town hall meetings,” Marengo said. “One option is fortification using revetments, seawalls, and structural enhancements. In other cases, it’s possible to opt for beach replenishment. Another strategy we see as necessary for Santos is mangrove rehabilitation, which can be classified as an ecosystem-based adaptation.”

“The measures chosen by the public were quite adequate. We hope the project will continue under the aegis of the local authorities with ongoing popular participation. If so, the worst-case scenario is much less likely to materialize,” said Luci Hidalgo Nunes, a researcher at UNICAMP and a project team member.

The city of Santos was chosen by the Project Metropolis team not just for its economic importance but also because its tidal, rainfall, temperature and storm surge data time series are the best among Brazil’s coastal cities.

“Although scientists and decision makers must discuss adaptations, it has to be public policy. It must come from the government,” Marengo said. “It’s an action that cannot stop and obviously there must be an investment. Santos has achieved a high level of awareness, with a broad dialogue involving the public, decision makers, and academia. The construction projects must be implemented. The worst thing that could happen would be if it all stayed on the drawing-board.”


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September 15, 2017 5:12 am

Ground water pumping might be more of an issue.

Reply to  Pablo
September 15, 2017 5:33 am

I have a question as an ignorant savage, but in addition to subsidence due to ground water pumping isn’t there also still a North American plate inter-glacial rebounding occurring that also contributes to some of the subsidence in areas further south such as Florida and so on? Rebounding being the tectonic plate where all the glacial ice was during the last Ice Age is rising due to the loss of being weighed down by all that ice, and the Southern part of the NA plate is subsiding? If so does the South American plate see some of the same kind of inter-glacial rebound?

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 6:12 am

Sometimes while one area is going up due to post glacial relief, another will be tilting downwards…
This is the case in the UK:

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 6:53 am

Oh, great Griff – now the Warmists will be claiming human CO2 emissions are causing the land to rise!
When will it end?

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 8:33 am

why criticise someone for make a stupid statement that they did not make, but you did?
What Griff points out is perfectly sensible but you prefer to ignore that and make up some stupic comment. Well done John, we need more of that here.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 9:15 am

I agree. Griff posts enough nonsense worthy of ridicule, it is not necessary, and is in fact counterproductive, to pound him when he posts something perfectly reasonable, as here.

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 9:46 am

Its not “tilting”. What is happening is that the rock “squeezed out” by the weight of the ice formed a “forebulge” around the ice-sheet. When the ice melted the rock started flowing back and filling up the hole. However rock is rather viscous so it takes a long time – tens of thousands of years.
In volcanic areas where the bedrock is less viscous it goes faster – In Iceland the process seems to have lasted only a few thousand years.

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 9:56 am

Thanks Griff. So it’s possible that a small portion of sea level rise in Brazil is still the SA plate adjusting from the last Ice Age yet?

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 10:09 am

“So it’s possible that a small portion of sea level rise in Brazil is still the SA plate adjusting from the last Ice Age yet?”
No not in Brazil, that is beyond the forebulge zone of the Laurentide ice, but in the West Indies it is probably true.
However the general rise in sea-level since the last glaciation does press the edges of all the continents down a bit due to the increased weight of water, and causes inland areas to rise slightly. Panta rhei as the philosopher said.
A nice map that shows how much the land rises in millimeters per year in northern Europe:

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 12:13 pm

Thanks tty: I was thinking of the Patagonian Ice Sheet but I found some map reconstructions that show not enough ice in Argentina to “bulge” the SA plate much. That and that the Antarctic plate would have contained the bulk of that Patagonian Ice. Good information.

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 12:42 pm

If the glaciers in the Andes’ grew during the last glacial, would they provide enough weight to tilt the S. American continent a bit, east/west?

Patrick MJD
Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 8:39 pm

Unfortunately Griff posts another alarmist article.
From the article…
“England is sinking into the sea while Scotland is rising at such a rate it may counteract the effects of sea level rise due to climate change, according to a new geological map.”
Right in the header! I’ve known about this since the 70’s and it has been known for much longer than that. It has absolutely nothing to do with climate change and/or sea level rise. Pure alarmist drivel.

Reply to  Bruce
September 15, 2017 9:02 pm

Griff September 15, 2017 at 6:12 am
The remarkable thing is that, despite southern Britain sinking as northern Britain rebounds from its loss of ice, southern British sea level was still higher in the Roman and Medieval Warm Periods than now.

Reply to  Bruce
September 16, 2017 1:04 am

Griff will be on the Southern side then, he is a glass half empty sort of guy.

September 15, 2017 5:17 am

Save the clock tower!

September 15, 2017 5:31 am

This story fits a constantly re-used template that comes up whenever future damages are assessed:
1) Assume the Terrible Thing happens.
2) Assume that the Terrible Thing is of course, caused by ‘Climate Change”
3) Assume that we have the power by spending some money now to stop “Climate Change.”
4) Since you have assumed that the Terrible Thing will happen, it is easy to assume Terrible Costs; in fact since this is all based on a string of assumptions you can assume any cost you want.
5) Point out that the assumed Cost to avoid the Terrible Thing will be much, much, less than the Terrible thing.
6) Disguise all of these assumptions as “Computer Models” and call it SCIENCE! And then call anyone who criticizes your methodology a Denier and a Fascist and a Racist.

Reply to  wws
September 15, 2017 6:16 am

7) … and then say with great gravitas in your voice, the word “Climate”, and the only solution for aforesaid “Climate” requires pretending to reduce CO2 levels in the Earth’s atmosphere.

Reply to  philincalifornia
September 15, 2017 6:38 am

And then take a stroll to the side of the nearest interstate and observe the endless stream of 18 wheelers carrying everything you need to live comfortably in the modern world that frees up your time to write scare scenarios about a business-as-usual future, and imagine those same 18 wheelers being powered by Tesla batteries or being drawn by teams of oxen. Then come back to the real world.

Reply to  philincalifornia
September 15, 2017 8:54 am

Well 1 …. 6 ( and 7 ) fit into the usual template of comments now on WUWT. Ignore what the post was about and go on a rant about what was NOT said …. but they may have , or someone very like them may or could have said at some time in the past or future.
This article is suggesting adaptation which is the only sensible course of action regarding sea level rise. It is not going to go away even if we all stop breathing. It is refreshing that they do not seem to end with the usual “we must act ” cries nor mention the Paris Agreement or anything similar. Seems very down to Earth, but don’t let you stop y’all having a good rant now, as if they did say that.
The suggested increase in storm swell is not extreme or alarmist but is worth considering as a possibility and planning for over the next hundred years. We have plenty of time to adjust the actual changes as the decades roll by. This is not going to sneak up on us unseen.

Coastal cities deal with the constant fear that sea levels should continue to rise in the years ahead due to climate change.

Nothing to do anthropogenic climate change but since sea levels have been rising for over a century at a fairly steady rate it would be reasonable to assume that will continue and plan for it unless something notably different starts to happen.
The thermal inertia of the oceans is so large that we will have time to move entire cities should that be needed.

Roger Knights
Reply to  philincalifornia
September 15, 2017 9:09 am

Greg: +1

Reply to  philincalifornia
September 15, 2017 9:37 am

The better solution would be to discourage people from building in flood planes. In other words, eliminate federally subsidized flood insurance. Once people see how expensive flood insurance will be if the market determined pricing, they will choose to build elsewhere unless they really can afford to loose everything.
Earthquake insurance is very expensive and yet the risk of a major Earthquake is far lower than that for a major Hurricane, moreover; wood frame structures are relatively unharmed during even major Earthquakes, while wood framed house are largely destroyed by flood waters reaching the ceilings.

Reply to  philincalifornia
September 15, 2017 10:25 am

Now you sound like mosher

Reasonable Skeptic
Reply to  philincalifornia
September 15, 2017 2:38 pm

Adaption is what people always do. I guess they simply could just say a stitch in time save five.

Allan Spector
Reply to  wws
September 15, 2017 9:34 am

Well said. Is there a difference between astrology and climatology?

Ben of Houston
Reply to  wws
September 15, 2017 9:41 am

WWS, I would agree except that in this case, about storm preparation, this is actually the correct method. It’s the other situations that are misusing it.
Even if we ignore climate change completely, the majority of areas are unprepared for a hundred year storm. Those storms come often enough to be incredibly destructive, but are rare enough that people don’t prepare for them. This can’t be done individually, it requires large scale civic projects that can only be done by the local or regional governments. However, they are often ignored or shoved aside.
For example, when New Jersey was struck by category 1 hurricane Sandy (I know it’s not technically a hurricane due to location, but using made-up words like superstorm only confuses people), it hit the same region hit by the great storm of 1826 and the 1933 Long Island Express. However, people were devastated due to a complete lack of preparation for what should have been expected. Similarly, Katrina devastated New Orleans because they weren’t prepared.
To compare, Houston was just hit with a 500 year storm in Harvey, and while we sustained a lot of damage, most of the city was up and running in two weeks. The worst damage was sustained by people who built homes in the areas designated as flood zones or right alongside the Bayous. Areas that, by all rights, we should have banned for construction.

September 15, 2017 6:02 am

I’m not having a problem with this. Adapting and preparing for possible continued warming temperatures and rising sea levels seems like a prudent thing to do.
Unless I missing it, I do not see where they are suggesting we exhale less CO2.

Reply to  JohnWho
September 15, 2017 6:35 am

I thought Paul Ehrlich’s book Population Bomb covered that.

Rhoda R
Reply to  JohnWho
September 15, 2017 7:08 am

If they want to adapt to ‘climate change’ fine. But I’m betting they want some international cash to do so. Remember the goal of the Paris Accord? They still want the cash.

Reply to  JohnWho
September 15, 2017 7:58 am

Think of the costs. Why not have the coastal areas of Florida prepare for, say, major blizzards? It is one thing instituting realistic building codes that take into account the likelihood of tropical storm events. But, if we assume the world is warming due to CO2, and that sea levels will steadily rise year after year, decade after decade, and century after century, then wouldn’t the prudent thing to do is to declare Florida a disaster area, and begin a program of forced depopulation?

Reply to  JohnWho
September 15, 2017 8:18 am

Preparing for rising sea levels has several benefits: you protect against rising sea levels (no matter how small), you get more protections against storms (including hurricanes), and you do not have to restructure your entire energy infrastructure to guard against postulated man-made climate change. Win-win-win.

Reply to  JohnWho
September 15, 2017 9:00 am

Please don’t buy into this shell game, talk of adaptation to CC is the magician’s sleight of hand. We are nowhere near being able to deal with just the plain old climate, so mentioning CC is just a distraction from the real problem, which can be defined just by looking at history.

Bruce Cobb
Reply to  JohnWho
September 15, 2017 9:08 am

The problem lies with the assumptions about what is actually happening now, and what, supposedly “will” happen in the future. Rising sea levels has been going on essentially at the same rate for centuries, as a consequence of being in an interglacial period. If we haven’t been adapting to that, what have we been doing? As far as “continued warming”, again, that assumes we are warming now, but what if we are actually starting to cool? There’s no problem with trying to ameliorate conditions in coastal zones which may be having issues with flooding, but it’s important to understand the actual reasons for those floods, and not just assume that it’s “global warming/climate change”, which of course automatically assumes that we’re responsible for something they claim “is happening”.

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
September 15, 2017 10:28 am

“Rising sea levels has been going on essentially at the same rate for centuries, as a consequence of being in an interglacial period.”
Interlacing peroid causes nothing.
Sea level rises because.
1. Subsistence.
2. Water expanding because of warmth.
3. More water because of ice melting.

Reply to  Bruce Cobb
September 15, 2017 12:45 pm

Interglacials cause 2 and 3, and can play a role in 1.

Ron Clutz
September 15, 2017 6:08 am

I am all for adaptation so long as planning assumptions are based on empirical data (what has happened before can happen again) and allowing for the range of events occurring in both cooling and warming periods.

Reply to  Ron Clutz
September 15, 2017 10:33 am

Empirical data can’t give you anything.
You have two choices. Apply a stats model to data or use a physics model.

Ron Clutz
Reply to  Steven Mosher
September 15, 2017 12:17 pm

Empirical data tells you what has happened before, in various climate periods. That is something, and a check against wild predictions.

sy computing
Reply to  Steven Mosher
September 15, 2017 3:17 pm

“Empirical data can’t give you anything. You have two choices. Apply a stats model to data or use a physics model.”
To what end?
“In sum, a strategy must recognise what is possible. In climate research and modelling, we should recognise that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible. The most we can expect to achieve is the prediction of the probability distribution of the system’s future possible states by the generation of ensembles of model solutions. This reduces climate change to the discernment of significant differences in the statistics of such ensembles.The generation of such model ensembles will require the dedication of greatly increased computer resources and the application of new methods of model diagnosis. Addressing adequately the statistical nature of climate is computationally intensive, but such statistical information is essential.”

Ben of Houston
Reply to  Steven Mosher
September 15, 2017 3:38 pm

Y’all, Mosher does have a point. The problem is that truly bad events happen rarely enough that you need to prepare. Look at the FEMA floodplain maps. See the 100 year floodplain? The 500 year floodplain? How can we accurately measure that, especially in areas that have records less than 200 years? Well, by statistical and physical models to determine which.areas have a 1% or 0.2% chance of flooding in an area.
Models get a bad rap because they are so misused in climatology, but you need them to make reasoned choices.
On the other hand, Steve, you are being a bit pedantic.

sy computing
Reply to  Steven Mosher
September 15, 2017 3:46 pm

“Models get a bad rap because they are so misused in climatology, but you need them to make reasoned choices.”
“Reasoned” choices to do what, exactly? If your models don’t work in the first place because 1) you don’t have a sufficient understanding of the system your modeling, 2) even if you did you don’t have the hardware to run the model that you need to run in order to accurately predict anything and 3) even if you *suspect* you have 1) and *do* have 2) you still don’t have the diagnostic tools to ensure that 1) is true?
Or so it appears to me from the IPCC statement?

September 15, 2017 6:13 am

Every study I’ve seen lumps together ALL the costs over many years time as if it all occurs at once. I have not seen any studies saying a huge sea level rise will drown Miami tomorrow. It’s GRADUAL. So, a thinking person would start slowing moving houses and buildings back from the shore. Allow no more building next to the ocean. NONE. Al Gore loses his ocean front property now, as do all other believers.
There is no reason all of this has to calculated as if it happens tomorrow. The total cost may well be over 50 or 100 years, if ever reaching that amount, and some will simply be in improvements that would have occurred without sea level rise.
We could start with making everyone who rebuilds from any hurricane move back away from the shore as far as possible. That would not cost extra, except maybe land aquistiion. Start now—you can move cities back one at a time. Of course, you do have to have the cooperation of the cities, but if it’s URGENT like is claimed, people should be happy to move back in anticipation of the coming sea level rise (or increased beach area if global warming should prove to be a huge scientific and political debacle—a win/win perhaps….)

Reply to  Sheri
September 15, 2017 6:53 am

dictating that people rebuild where they are told is amongst the worst excesses of socialism. Let people build where they want. If insurance companies deem it too risky the cost will discourage people from building on the coast.
Humans, largely, and quite naturally, only react to events when they actually happen, not when they are predicted to happen. Had anyone acted on Nostradamus’s predictions they would have been sorely disappointed.
Unfortunately, people now seem a lot more stupid that they were in the 16th Century, I suspect it’s something to do with worshipping at the alter of the computer prediction. Because, of course, people hide behind computers in more ways than one.

Rhoda R
Reply to  HotScot
September 15, 2017 7:16 am

When I was in college one class I took required that we program an old Wang computer with a six character code. Everything, spaces, commas, numbers, actions etc. all had their unique six character code and we had to tell the computer what to do every step of the way. (Long time ago, back when this was state of the art programing) No one who has done that EVER thinks computers are smart. Maybe we should introduce an exercise such as this to really drive home to students that computers are idiot savants and not an independent font of wisdom.

Reply to  HotScot
September 15, 2017 8:35 am

Computers are stupid; they’re just very very good at following directions. Hundreds of thousands of directions every minute for the average home PC. Billions for the LHe/LNi refridgerated supercoms. That projects a powerful illusion of smart-ness for the casual user or observer. Of course, one typo in all those programmed directions and the whole thing comes to a screeching halt.

Reply to  HotScot
September 15, 2017 9:11 am

While I am also loath to impose restriction upon freedoms, one must look at the consequences of unrestrained development to the remainder of society. Interestingly you mention the application of “free-market” impositions. Lack of affordable insurance is only one. Increased insurance rates for “marginal zones” is well understood, but incessant political pressure from those wanting to build in areas where emergency & fire protection vehicles cannot easily reach, flood plains, or in slide prone zones is rampant. Sometimes these developments/structures are built regardless. Then comes the inevitable “we-told-you-so” event which destroys these properties, but not before a great bit of public treasure and effort has been expended to attempt to save these fools. The unspoken issue is the remediation after the event. The homes are destroyed and inhabitants gone, yet the blighted trash heaps remain to be collected and removed again at great public expense.
Merely dictating that, “It’s all on your dime.” doesn’t actually result in the costs being born by the miscreant developers. History has demonstrated this repeatedly.

Reply to  HotScot
September 15, 2017 9:32 am

If you want some really runaway modeling look at “Big Data”, and “AI”. Both, alone or together, use algorithms(some opaquely developed by neural nets) to look for statistical correlations between thousands of variables and produce multiple thousands of trends. Humans then look at rthem an one says “Wow! I never even thought of that!.
US spending on Science, Space and Technology with Suicides by Hanging, Strangulation, and
Drowning by Falling into a Pool with Films Nicolas Cage Starred In
per Capita Cheese Consumption with Deaths by Tangling in the Bed Sheets
Divorce Rate in Maine with per capita Margarine Consumption
Total Revenue from Arcades with New Computer Science Doctorates in the U.S.
With hundreds of thousands of correlations produced by big data it only takes one wacky idea provoked by on correlation to possibly produce a new business worth billions. How many people can make a living for years off the prospect of a 100 billion dollar payoff? Is it even possible to train artificial intelligence to produce a new idea?

Reply to  HotScot
September 15, 2017 11:46 am

“…dictating that people rebuild where they are told is amongst the worst excesses of socialism. Let people build where they want. If insurance companies deem it too risky the cost will discourage people from building on the coast.”
That is perfectly sensible, but one of the moderate excesses of socialism is for the government to back the insurance companies and the banks, so both are actually encouraged to loan money and sell insurance for high risk properties at low risk rates. Having your bank savings account and/or your flood insurance insured by the Federal Government may sound like a good thing, but it is really a modest form of socialism. Socialism is a way of solving small, temporary problems, but turning them into long term catastrophes.

Reply to  jclarke341
September 15, 2017 12:44 pm

Very good points. Thank you.

Reply to  HotScot
September 15, 2017 4:45 pm

I get your point hotscot ,but aren’t uk planning policies /restrictions etc. essentially that .(dictation)

Reply to  kendo2016
September 16, 2017 2:12 am

I entirely agree. Restrictive, pedantic and out of date.

Non Nomen
Reply to  Sheri
September 15, 2017 1:01 pm

You nailed it. That’s what I call common sense at it’s finest.

…dictating that people rebuild where they are told is amongst the worst excesses of socialism.

Sheri doesnt want to dictate “where to build” but just to tell people where “not to build”. Forget about socialism, it’s just sheer necessity.

September 15, 2017 6:14 am

If only we could build dikes as well as the dutch in the 1700’s. You know back then they even had windmills to pump water out of the drenched fields into channels that emptied into the north sea. Alas, the technologies of walls, wind, and pumps has been lost to the ages. Woe to us, let us all weep for the loss that is sure to come in 100 years.

Reply to  chadb
September 15, 2017 6:22 am

Also, as we all know 100 years is far too short a time to replace infrastructure. I mean seriously, we are certainly still driving on the same roads as at the end of WWI, we have the same sewage structure, and none of those buildings in the picture have been built since then. As a society over 100 years we might, just might be able to build a couple hundred houses, but that’s about it.
Either that or in 100 years we can manage to more than double the population, move from an average home size of ~200 sqft to >1,000, pipe treated water to homes, build sewage treatment facilities, electrify the nation, built a national highway system, follow that with an interstate highway system, build out a gasoline pipeline system, a natural gas pipeline system, a national air system, a telephone system, a cellular system, high speed internet to almost all of our citizens and so on. By golly, if we need to build a 1ft high wall along a beach I think we just might be able to pull it off. Maybe.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  chadb
September 15, 2017 10:19 am

We may be driving on the same rights-of-way as 100 years ago, but we are most assuredly not driving on the same surfaces. Roadways are rebuilt/resurfaced about every 10-15 years or so, at least here in the Northeast.

Andy pattullo
September 15, 2017 6:16 am

Models of damage based on unvalidated models of climate change based on speculation about a proposed but unproven predominant role of CO2 in controlling global temperatures, all while ignoring all the evidence of natural drivers and natural variation in climate that predates industrial society. By all means do prepare for bad weather, but let’s not pretend this type of speculation should be guiding our decisions.

September 15, 2017 6:31 am

Another wishful “what if” scenario full of gross assumptions, ignorance and opinion.
i.e. a worthless model built to thrill the alarmists. I wonder how much they spent on that piece of trash?

Reply to  ATheoK
September 15, 2017 8:57 am

Too much!

Reply to  ATheoK
September 15, 2017 4:19 pm

… take the value of the 50 year old building, assume that the same building will still there and will be inundated 80 years into the future, apply the cost of fixing said building to mitigate said assumed inundations and estimate what the cost of the sea level rise will be. Come up with conclusions based on the assumptions. Hand off the conclusions to the risk management experts so they can provide a pre-determined recommendation to the politicians.
… piece of shit

Reply to  DonM
September 15, 2017 5:13 pm

Fifty years ago, i.e. 1967 onto current days; all of that pressboard, hardboard, cheap plywood, gypsum board along with all of the pressboard furniture collapse from extended baths in water.
Water resistant is not the same as waterproof.
Which means that flooded homes = new construction or gutting then installing new interiors. One of the reasons insurance is hit with higher insurance claims.
Older houses, say 19th Century, built from solid wood and solid wood furniture survive floods far better.

September 15, 2017 7:12 am

There are many drowned cities off the coastlines of many nations,so many because Humans set up their main cities by the coast,London,Amsterdam,Rome,Carthage,Lisbon,Manila, the list goes on.
Below is a simple narrative of lost cities,roads,mines,river canyons and more.
Drowned Cities
“Gradually rising seas
For 4,000 years, the world’s sea level has been inching up.
This has been caused by
(a) the melting of the post-Flood ice and
(b) the gradual evaporation or outflow of inland basins to the sea.
The gradual rise of the oceans is thus another clear relic of the Deluge. Flood waters left behind on the land, in the form of ice or inland lakes, have been gradually returning to the oceans. The result has been not only a drying out of the land, but a corresponding rise in sea level.
The Hadji Ahmed map of 1559, whose original source dates back thousands of years, shows a landbridge between Siberia and Alaska, which existed when the original map was drawn. If the ocean between these two land masses were lowered 100 feet today, there would be a dry-land path between them.
According to some oceanographers and geologists, the ocean level may have been as much as 500 feet lower than today.
Ireland was connected with England; the North Sea was a great plain; Italy was joined to Africa, and exposed land cut the Mediterranean into two lakes.
Since then, the rising seas have engulfed coastal land and islands, turning isthmuses into straits and large islands into underwater plateaus.
Along many of the world’s shorelines are lost islands, now deep below the sea, with remains of cities, palaces and temples.
The continental shelf
In fact, most of the continental shelf, which marks the true boundaries between the ocean basins and the continental areas, now lies under a mean depth of 430 feet of water. (It ranges from 300 feet to about 1,500 feet.)
The present continental shelf probably defines the edge of the oceans as they developed during the post-Flood glacial peak. With the ice melt and the draining or evaporation of inland basins, the seas rose, with minor fluctuations, to their present level.
“The ocean basins can thus be characterized as overfull – water not only fills the ocean basins proper, but extends out over the low margins of the continents.” So notes a panel of geologists. (J.V. Trumbull, John Lyman, J.F. Pepper and E.M. Thompson, “An Introduction to the Geology and Mineral resources of the Continental Shelves of the Americas”, U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 1067, 1958, p.11)
Oceanographers and geologists generally agree that a dramatic, rapid rise of water occurred several thousand years ago. This has slowed to about 1.5 feet per century.
Undersea canyons
Around the world’s coastlines are undersea river canyons, which were once above the ocean. Such canyons cannot be cut underwater.
* The submerged Hudson Canyon, one hundred miles long and hundreds of feet deep, could only have been formed above water when this extension of the Hudson River was dry land.
* Off the coast of Europe are the Loire, Rhone, Seine and Tagus canyons. The drowned Rhine Valley runs under the North Sea to disappear between Norway and Scotland – showing that the North Sea was dry land.
* Numerous other canyons were cut at the edge of the former ocean basin (now submerged) : La Plata in Argentina, the Delaware and St. Lawrence in North America, the Congo in West Africa. Off the African west coast are submerged river canyons whose rivers no longer exist in the now-arid land.
All these canyons were cut out above water. Now they are submerged.”

Reply to  Sunsettommy
September 15, 2017 9:57 am

Submarine canyons are actually cut by turbidity currents, sludge to put it simply. The sludge is provided by rivers which is why canyons preferentially (but not always) occur near rivers.
In the Mediterranean there are a number of submarine canyons that were cut subaerially when the Mediterranean was partially desiccated 5 million years ago. They are very different from the ordinary run of submarine canyon. For one thing they go well back into the continents. The Nile valley is such a canyon, though mostly filled with sediments now.

Reply to  tty
September 15, 2017 11:26 am

the canyons mentioned in the link, were connected to still existing rivers on land. When the Oceans were over 350 feet lower, the rivers simply flowed that further distance to the ancient shoreline,that is why we find buried river basins and canyons today,as the Ocean sea level went up those 350 feet to cover it over.

September 15, 2017 7:20 am

If cost efficiency is so important, the world must create a superfund to protect the most valuable coastal real estate, instead of wasting money on useless atolls.

old man
September 15, 2017 7:25 am

99% of photos of Irma damage to homes were mobile homes. Mobile homes aren’t attached to any solid foundation. How about revising requirements for mobile home construction?

Reply to  old man
September 15, 2017 8:35 am

So, you’re saying that “tornado magnets” are also “hurricane magnets”

Tom Halla
September 15, 2017 7:34 am

A “more realistic scenario” of 3.6mm SLR? The highest defensible estimates are less than 2mm. Oh, well, if one is writing a booga-booga we all gonna die scenario, what is doubling the risk?

Reply to  Tom Halla
September 15, 2017 7:58 am

Actually, ~2.2. See my guest post on SLR and closure.

September 15, 2017 8:17 am

The solution is simple stop supporting construction in low lying coastal areas. Was driving the big truck scanning the radio stations and came across an NPR program where the Mayor of Tampa was being interviewed. Was surprised by the tone of the interviewer who asked something to the effect: ‘Tampa has dodged a bullet from the recent hurricane but it can’t expect to remain so lucky. What are your plans Mr. Mayor to address the problem of so many years of poor decisions in the placement of developments which have continually been allowed to be built in the low lying coastal areas?’
The mayor first did the usually meaningless two bit shuffle and then launched into how the current administration must take climate change seriously and it was a tragedy it didn’t. Didn’t know squat about the mayor of Tampa but now I know all I need to know. 

Reply to  RAH
September 15, 2017 8:39 am

In locality there was flooding in the 1972 Agnes storm.
Now, 40 years later they have allowed townhomes to be built in the area that was 10+ feet under water in 1972. The new occupants have no idea.

Tom Judd
September 15, 2017 8:55 am

Using computer models, and inputting hypothetical scenarios, I have been able to develop robust projections that show that by the year 2050 I will be dead. Extending these models to the year 2100 indicate that I will be deader by an additional 50 years.
Wait a minute, having computer models show that I’ll be dead by the year 2050 is the height of stupidity, and silliness, if not outright insanity. In 2017 I turned 63 years old. In 2050 I would be 96 – not gonna happen. And in 2100 I’d be 146 years old – super duper supercharged not gonna happen.
It just dawned on me. I think the foregoing illustrates that we absolutely positively do not need, (not even a little, not even an itsy bitsy teensie amount) computer models to tell us what will happen when we absolutely positively know what’s going to happen in the future. So, we only (think) we need models when we don’t have a smidgen of a clue what’s going to happen. But, since we’re all going to be quite dead by then, we’ll never have a clue as to whether those computer models had a clue as to what was going to happen.
So, in the end, it’s all the same thing. Nobody has a clue. It’s just that nobody has a clue that they don’t have a clue.
I’d say forget about things we can never be anything other than clueless about (like, maybe what the future will be like after we’re long dead?) and consider the here and now and cultivate some good single malts, microbrews, and good friends to compare them with.
Now, I’m not going to argue either for or against any religious belief (well, there’s a couple I’d argue against), but if somebody wants to spend their time in angst over events that won’t happen until long after they’re dead you’d think they’d be devoting those energies instead to their own afterlife and leave the rest of us alone.

Reply to  Tom Judd
September 15, 2017 10:59 am

Deal with what you can control, forget the rest.

September 15, 2017 9:10 am

150 years ago they raised Chicago

Reply to  mikewaite
September 15, 2017 4:59 pm

Wonder if there were land use planners, risk management experts, and associated public hearings, to verify that the engineered solution would work.
If we apply analysis and the same standards of the subject article to 1850 Chicago we will find that it will cost 13 Billion to mitigate the problems associated with 1850 Chicago low elevation. ;}
And, how much federal aid did Chicago receive to raise the City? (Last year they got 5 Billion just for being there.)

Peta of Newark
September 15, 2017 9:44 am

researchers say, losses might be up to ten times higher

Oh great. Throw a fat chunk of meat at the cronies telling them how much it’ll cost and that is one prediction that WILL come true.
Not really, it’ll actually just become the starting point for epic expenditure.
Hello hello, what’s this…

necessary for Santos is mangrove rehabilitation, which can b

You’ve cut the mangrove? Clowns. You Complete And Utter Clowns.
Get what you deserve, slow death by drowning, and be grateful.

Coastal cities deal with the constant fear that

Lets have some sort of proof Lady, or this is just Psychological Projection.
Constant fear and guilty feelings may also be called ‘paranoia’, the classic symptom of (chronic) depression.
Do Not attempt to assuage your personal preferences and fails by dumping them onto other people.
Ancel Keys did exactly that and he’ll have killed & maimed billions by the time his ‘science’ is shown to be the cr4p it is.

occurrence of extreme events, such as meteorological tides and storm surges, which are increasingly frequent because of climate change

As they used to say at a message board I used to visit (now defunct because of trollery)..
“Show me pictures or it didn’t happen”

….ible to opt for beach replenishment. A…..

Please do tell us more about The Beach.
I really do hope its not where the mangrove used to be.
Assuming it wasn’t, what happened to it?
(Things may become unprintable if the sand was used for concrete to build those towers block we see in your picture)

michael hart
September 15, 2017 9:54 am

Thing is, these things already happen because people already build and live in coastal areas prone to flood damage and disease.
People within, say, x yards of the ocean will be the ones at risk. So even if the ocean rises a lot, it will still remain true that people within x yards of the ocean will be the ones at risk. With sea level rising slowly compared to the life-cycle turnover of buildings then I don’t see any significant change in the status quo. In many parts of the world the existing life-cycle of buildings can be very short because the shacks of poor people are rebuilt after they are wiped out by tropical storms and other ‘acts of god’. The 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake tsunami hasn’t yet been blamed on global warming but it highlighted the risks already faced routinely by millions.
This seems just one more global warming alarm which pretends that natural catastrophes didn’t happen before someone told them about carbon dioxide.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  michael hart
September 15, 2017 10:27 am

It isn’t mostly about how far horizontally you are from the ocean, it’s about how far vertically you are from mean high high water.

September 15, 2017 5:32 pm

I didn’t realize that at most universities today, one of the most popular majors today is not in the STEM departments but rather in Fine Arts. Almost everyone pushing this nonsense must have a BS Artist degree.

sy computing
Reply to  Allencic
September 15, 2017 6:02 pm

“Almost everyone pushing this nonsense must have a BS Artist degree.”
Interesting. So couldn’t we reformulate your argument as follows?
Assumption1: AGW is nonsense.
Assumption2: All those pushing AGW must have earned a Bachelor of Arts degree.
Conclusion: Therefore, those who’ve earned a Bachelor of Arts:[whatever] push nonsense.
If the reformulation is valid then is it not the case that you’ve committed at least:
1) the Circular Cause and Consequence informal logical fallacy?
and/or perhaps even
2) the Begging the Question logical fallacy?
If not, why not?
If you *have* committed either, then know that I determined you did from earning a BA: Philosophy

Walter Sobchak
September 15, 2017 9:32 pm

One major problem with the op above is that there is no such thing as a global warming related disease. Before the late 19th Century most people believed that diseases were spread by bad air. The word malaria is derived from the Italian phrase “mala aria” ‘bad air’ which referred to the unwholesome exhalations of marshes.
We now know that the so called tropical diseases such a malaria and dengue are spread by mosquitoes. We also know that mosquitoes can be controlled by drainage and insecticides, The only thing standing in the way of preventing mosquito born diseases are the “environmentalists” who worship “ecologically important wetlands” (i.e. malaria swamps) and oppose DDT because of the unscientific rantings of some woman back in the early 1960s.

September 15, 2017 11:17 pm

The world ex-US knows and accepts the realities of AGW. Action is already being taken by their governments to limit the impact of climate change. The climate sceptics may argue all they like, but the reality is that the US us really out on a limb on this issue:

September 17, 2017 5:22 am

How many buildings around you are over 50 years old?
Cities like Sao Paulo will be virtually remade in 50 years. If there is in fact some significant change in sea level there in the next 50 years, that will be taken into account by the people building the new structures.
I.e., concern with sea level rise over several generations is rooted in ignorance. There is the further problem of net present value. Spending money now on a problem in the distant future is stupid.
A third problem is our ignorance of the future. The future will figure out is best for the future; anything we set up for them will be viewed as quaint. 2100 is 83 years out. 83 years ago was 1934. We laugh at the idea of the people of 1934 making decisions for us. We should not be trying to create the future.
A fourth problem is whose problem is it, anyway? If I have a beach front house, and it is destroyed by a storm, it is MY PROBLEM, and no one else’s. The fate of Sao Paulo buildings is the problem of the buildings’ owners, and no one else’s. Claiming my driving my car is going to destroy a Sao Paulo building isn’t going to get me to stop driving my car.

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