Activists say East Boston could be hit hard by rising sea levels
Published: Friday, January 6, 2012
Activists are criticizing proposals to increase development along East Boston's waterfront, saying the area will likely be flooded in the next 50 to 75 years, according to scientific projections.
"One of my biggest concerns is, how are they taking into account climate change in all of these waterfront development projects?" said Neenah Estrella-Luna, a community activist who fears the outcome of proposals made by Mayor Thomas Menino last month.
She said scientific estimates predict waters will rise anywhere from 2.5 to 5 feet before 2087. The latter could leave only the highest points in East Boston dry. The most likely scenario, according to Estrella- Luna, is the submersion of the low-lying areas where landfill was originally dumped to form connections between the five islands that make up East Boston.
Daily high tides are also predicted to rise, causing more flooding in basements, sewers and low-lying coastal areas. Current tide patterns already cause some parts of Boston to flood. In addition, some people fear environmental dangers should water seep into East Boston's industrial sites, which contain pollutants.
Victoria Wolff, director of sustainable cities at the Urban Ecology Institute, said it's important to consider how different areas will need to adapt to sea-level rise (Jeremy Fox, Boston.com, Jan. 4). -- LJ
Reprinted from ClimateWire with permission from Environment & Energy Publishing, LLC. www.eenews.net. 202-628-6500
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