Union of Concerned Scientists

This Is Your Planet on Sea Level Rise. Any Questions?

This is the extent of flooding from Hurricane Sandy in Cape May, NJ (left) vs. the area that would flood twice monthly by 2100 due to sea level rise (right)

One of the most powerful televised public service announcements of my youth inspired this post.

There are moments when your own data stops you dead in your tracks. I had one of those moments a few months ago as we were preparing to release our When Rising Seas Hit Home report.

The results were so stark, the case for sound climate policy so clear that I can think of no better way, on the eve of the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Sandy’s devastating landfall, to convey where sea level rise could take us than by spoofing what was arguably the most powerful televised public service announcement of my youth.

Is there anyone out there who still isn’t clear about what sea level rise does? OK. Last time.*

This was the extent of flooding from Hurricane Sandy on Long Island

This is the area that would flood twice monthly by 2100 due to sea level rise

Any questions?


This is the extent of flooding from Hurricane Sandy in northern New Jersey (left) vs. the area that would flood twice monthly by 2100 due to sea level rise (right)

Any questions?


This is the extent of flooding from Hurricane Sandy in Cape May (left) vs. the area that would flood twice monthly by 2100 due to sea level rise (right)

Any questions?


*Yes, this was the actual language used in the PSA.

Data sources: UCS When Rising Seas Hit Home; FEMA Hurricane Sandy Impact Analysis; OpenStreetMap; Partnership for a Drug-Free America

Kristy Dahl

More from Union of Concerned Scientists

Union of Concerned Scientists5 min read
SOS Congress: Nation’s Flood Policy Is Not Keeping Up with Climate Change Reality
September is preparedness month and for good reason. It is a time when the Atlantic Basin Hurricane season is at its peak. The National Hurricane Center is now tracking three storms, Hurricane Humberto, tropical depression Imelda, and tropical storm
Union of Concerned Scientists2 min readPolitics
Adults Behaving Badly: Climate Edition
Today, millions of children and their adult allies across the globe strike to force action on the climate crisis. All of us should feel hopeful, inspired, grateful, but not at all surprised that young people are leading the charge to save our and the
Union of Concerned Scientists6 min read
Fellow Parents, Why Supporting the Climate Strike is What It’s All About
Friends, If you are weighing whether to support your child in striking this Friday during the global climate strike, can I have a minute? First, let’s put this on the table: it’s not easy being a parent, and in the era of climate change, it’s unnervi