Sign up now for an talk with author with Stanley Riggs at North Regional Library tomorrow, Wednesday, January 18th at 7:00 p.m.
Every January, the news media immediately refocus our attention from the hectic December holidays to the new year ahead, with New Year’s resolutions and forecasts about Top 10 national or local stories to keep on your radar. For North Carolinians, my pick is sea-level rise.
Why? Because scientists project accelerating sea rise could range from 3 to 6-7 feet or more by 2100. NC is one of the top three most vulnerable states. Whether you love to visit the coast, own property there, or are a tax payer who’ll indirectly share the costs of addressing potentially catastrophic changes, you’ll find two brief books by internationally eminent NC scientists, fascinating and informative.
This compelling book focuses on NC’s treasured barrier islands and unique coast: how our islands have historically receded due to storms, and are now threatened with collapse over the next few decades by accelerating sea-level rise and storms. Our 20 coastal counties and tourism industry are also at risk.
Riggs’ 40 year career of coastal research and leadership has led to him being described as a state treasure and coastal icon. He’s been instrumental in NC’s coastal management policies which helped protect our beaches’ stability and natural beauty.
Riggs points out that NC policies are more proactive than many other states. But development practices, increasing urbanization, and trying to hold the islands where they are, to protect buildings and roads, are in direct conflict with their natural landward movement. They’re actually hastening island destruction. His book is filled with fascinating color photographs illustrating the need for new approaches, and presents an important positive new vision for protecting both our coast and tourism for the future.
Check back tomorrow for another book review on this topic!