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The Rising Sea by [Pilkey, Orrin H.]
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The Rising Sea Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Length: 224 pages Word Wise: Enabled Audible Narration:
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Veteran academics Pilkey (The Corps and the Shore) and Young (a geoscientist and Pilkey's former student) team up to offer a rational approach to inevitably rising sea levels over the next century, an unprecedented problem for human civilization: for the first time a densely developed shoreline is putting the ways of life of millions of people at risk." Even with a significant reduction in carbon emissions, sea levels will continue to rise and, combined with increasingly severe storms, force a retreat from the shoreline. Thus, the authors make a strong case for an immediate halt to high-rise construction "in areas vulnerable to future sea level rise" coupled with the relocation of buildings and infrastructure, to be executed "when major maintenance is needed." Simultaneously, steps should be taken to protect coastal marshes, mangroves and especially coral reefs ("the most biologically diverse environments in the modern ocean"). Pilkey and Young make short work of costly plans like sea walls and artificial beaches, with provide no long-term protection. Pilkey and Young's balanced, optimistic perspective on the tough decisions that lie ahead should garner interest from policy makers and real estate developers as well as environmentalists.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"A must read for all Americans. The authors are among our most eminent coastal scientists. They deliver, in clear and measured prose, an urgent message explaining how rising sea levels will affect New York, Miami, Houston, Los Angeles and every coastal community in our country."
(Bruce Babbitt former Secretary of the Interior)

"An excellent, easy-to-read exploration of how oceans change and how the changes affect people—their property, their relationship to nature, and their perception of what is permanent. This is a fascinating book for all concerned about the state of the planet we are leaving to our descendants."
(John M. Teal scientist emeritus, Woods Hole Oceanograhic Institution)

"The Rising Sea is a must-read, not only for those of us living on the coast but for everyone concerned about meeting the challenges of the future."
(Florida Times-Union)

"The Rising Sea takes on a host of contentious issues, ranging from the science of climatology to the politics of coastal planning to the economics of engineering, all the while taking into account the perverse psychology of a populace loath to acknowledge the truth when doing so proves disruptive. Although insistent, Pilkey and Young are never unduly alarmist."
(Issues in Science and Technology)

"One of the things I like best about The Rising Sea is its inclusion of many examples of climate-change adaptation, which suggests an emerging emphasis on climate-change adaptation and linkages between the natural world and people."
(Conservation Biology)

"Pilkey and Young's balanced, optimistic perspective on the tough decisions that lie ahead should garner interest from policy makers and real estate developers as well as environmentalists."
(Publishers Weekly)

"The Rising Sea....is a book that is likely to inspire many. The authors knowledgably and effectively sound the retreat from the coast."
(Electronic Green Journal)

"Sea level rise is a lurking dragon. Experts chart its pulse nervously, but speak quietly. Pilkey and Young pierce this reticence, telling a story that the public must understand—or the dragon may burst out of humanity's control."
(Dr. James E. Hansen Director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies)

Product Details

  • File Size: 3067 KB
  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Shearwater; 1 edition (July 11, 2009)
  • Publication Date: July 14, 2009
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007ULWVF4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #993,793 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Fitzgerald L. Booker on June 25, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dramatic increases in sea level are possible in the next 50-100 years. The extent of sea level increase will depend on what nature and we do between now and then to our Earth's atmosphere and oceans. This book clearly summarizes the current changes in sea levels around the world, and what can be expected with anticipated changes in global climate trends. Importantly, the book includes guidelines for coping with forseeable consequences of sea level rise.

Sea levels are on the rise. There's no mistake about it. Imagine, for example, what the coast may look like in 50 years when the seashore is 1000 feet inland from where it is now. All the ocean-front dwellings will need to be moved back from the encroaching sea. And this is for regions that can adapt to changing sea levels. Some island nations will disappear with the rising sea. Miami, Florida, is on the front-line for potential impact by risng sea levels and will need to adapt. All these issues are addressed in this book in a very readable way.

The potential impact on New Orleans and the Gulf Coast is dramically portrayed. A number of illustrations of past impacts of storms on these and other regions is reviewed. However, the connection between the recounts of past storm damages and impacts of climate change is somewhat difficult to interpret, expect to imply that future storms may be worse than the awful damage we've seen before. The real soul of the authors lies in recommendations for current shoreline management policies that will preserve their beauty and enjoyment for the public for the forseeable future. Shorelines change and we need to adapt to those changes, not try to prevent them.

There's lots to think about after reading this book. It's very readable and flows well. It would have benefited from additional editing as some parts are redundant and overall connections could be better made. It's a enjoyable book to read while at this beach this summer.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This book should be required reading of every mayor and town planner for any US city or town within 50 miles of the sea. Even if the homes and businesses under their jurisdiction are not in the direct path of the next storm surge, officials should be prepared to receive those wise enough to retreat beforehand or as first responders to those desperately seeking refuge at the last minute. As an example, in Chapter 3, the stark news is that “the survival of both Miami and New Orleans beyond the twenty-first century is in serious doubt.” However, whereas the latter is making attempts to prepare, at least for the next storm if not the longer-range future, Florida officials still have their head in the sand, sand that is rapidly being swept away with every high tide. Of course, these are not the only cities and towns with a dismal future, just the most obviously in trouble.
Chapter 6 describes the unintended side effects of the 1968 National Flood Insurance Program, designed to help flood victims of otherwise uninsurable homes. Unfortunately, this and other governmental programs have “encouraged dangerous and environmentally damaging shoreline development…. Frequently, storm recovery is essentially a vast urban renewal project,” at tax payers expense.
We could learn lessons from the past, especially the history of the Holderness Coast of Yorkshire, England [Chapter 11, “Ghosts of the Past, Promise of the Future”]. During the last two thousand years, 28 towns and villages have been inundated by eroding shoreline. The future destruction of an additional 20 towns will happen much more rapidly, during the next 50-100 years. Let the Holderness experience be our guide to the inevitable.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dr.Orrin Pilkey ( Coastal geologist) is America's leading critic of US Gov't policies along it's coast lines and one of the world'd leading experts on all things Coastal. This book updates his positions on these issues plus warns all of us that the world's Oceans are rising ( do to Global warming) and the pace is picking up! By 2100 he predicts in this book that they could rise by more then 20 ft., drowning most of the world's low lying regions and Islands and with it America's major coastal cities like NYC and Miami! Dr. Pilkey is a very serious scientist so these predictions and claims are not just speculation there founded on hard science. This book is easy to read and is a must for anyone seriously interested in our Coast lines and Oceans. Some scientific jargon but mostly written for a lay audience. All in all its a good read.
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Format: Hardcover
Whether or not you believe "global warming" is due to man's impact, the reality is sea levels are not static. They've risen and fallen forever, and currently are in a rising pattern because the earth is warmer than in the recent past. The rising sea impacts the shoreline in ways that aren't "just" from higher water levels.

This fascinating book describes how the shoreline reacts to a rising sea, and the futility of man's efforts to rebuild beaches, add sea walls, (re)build property, etc.

Anyone residing in a seaside community would benefit from reading this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is an excellent review of the data, theory, and consequences of sea level rise due to increasing temperature.

I started reading it just before I went to Hilton Head Island for a week at the beach and just after I started writing a web page about sea level versus temperature ([...] I spent more time reading the book than I did walking the beach.

When I did walk the beach, because of reading the book, I had a greater understanding of what the beach might be like a century from now. And the book influenced how I finished writing the web page as much as other sources did.

The book will be of interest to scientists who work in related fields and to citizens who want to be informed about the consequences of rising temperatures. It should be required reading for those who own shore-front property.
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