Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Climate change could cripple New York transportation

Andrew Freedman in Climate Central: When arriving at La Guardia Airport in New York, it’s easy to see the stark realities it faces in trying to cope with global warming. As jets glide in over the brackish waters of Flushing Bay, one can almost reach out and touch the water as it laps against the small levees at runway’s edge.

...As sea level increases in response to manmade global warming, the 100-year storm is turning into a far more common event, and climate change adaptation is taking on a heightened sense of urgency throughout the transportation sector. The challenges are particularly acute in the New York City area, where mass transit moves more than 8 million people every day, 24/7, into and out of a city with 520 miles of waterfront.

Given the climate change-related challenges the city faces, it’s no surprise New York is mobilizing to fortify its infrastructure. It is spending $1.5 billion over 15 years to improve its stormwater management, cooling white roofs and clean-fuel buses, and has pledged to reduce city-wide greenhouse gas emissions below 2005 levels by 2030....

That's La Guardia's runways in the upper middle of the shot, shot by Andreas Praefcke, public domain

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