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California and Florida in hundreds of years

  1. Aug 21, 2015 #1
    Is it true Florida and California will sink into the ocean in hundreds of years? I've heard somewhere that Florida might sink in hundreds of years time and that California in hundreds of years time might either sink or break off into an island.
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  3. Aug 21, 2015 #2


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    If you study world geology, you will find that sea levels rise and fall continually and we have found many once thriving cities and communities under water. It happens. As some land goes under water, other lands rise.
  4. Aug 24, 2015 #3
    If you look at the NOAA sea level trends for Florida,
    The increase per century is less than 1 foot.
    There are some areas where one foot will make a difference, when added to high seasonal tides,
    but not much worse than already happens.
    Tides are as much affected by the fetch (wind distance over water), as by the lunar cycles.
    When you get constructive interference of the two, it would be easy to double most normal tides.
  5. Aug 25, 2015 #4


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    and also if you did a little study on Californian tectonics, you would find that the myth perpetrated by many Hollywood disaster movies that California ( well at least the section west of the San Andreas Fault could/would slide off and into the ocean, to be just that, a myth.
    The tectonics of California surrounding the San Andreas Fault region, shows that the movement is primarily a roughly Northwest-Southeast motion along the fault.
    There is very little to no extensional tectonics in the region. ( maybe a little in the "Bay Area" in the areas between the San Andreas, Calaveras and Heyward fault systems.
    The overall system is primarily strike/slip with some small areas of compressional motion, where the fault does "dogleg" bends eg to the NE of LA

  6. Sep 20, 2015 #5
    For the last two and a half million years, our planet has experienced more than a hundred (102 at last count) consecutive cycles of continental glaciation (“Ice Ages”) followed by warm—even tropical—interglacial periods. Each one of these cycles has been different in detail, but similar in broad outline. Some are longer and some are shorter, but the average current cycle seems to last about 100,000 years. We have had ten glacial-interglacial cycles in the last million years.

    We are now some eighteen-thousand years into the expected fifty-thousand year warming phase. If it is anything like the last interglacial, we can expect global temperatures to rise by another 12°F and sea levels by some thirteen to twenty feet. This warming will be very irregular in both area and time. The tropics won’t warm much at all, while the sub-polar areas may warm 20°F or more.

    What does this all mean for us? Not much, really. The current temperature change is only a little less than one degree C per century and the current rise in mean sea levels is less than twenty cm over the same period of time. Our present technology is more than adequate to deal with such changes, and our future technology likely to be even better.
  7. Sep 20, 2015 #6


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    My favorite story along those lines was about a scientist who, some years in the future found rock solid evidence that everything on the CA side of the fault was going to definitely sink into the ocean very soon but his results kept coming up with the wrong sign. While everyone else headed inland, he stayed and tried to figure out where he had gone wrong. Then the rest of the country sank into the ocean.
  8. Sep 20, 2015 #7


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    Haha, hadn't heard that version before :smile:

  9. Sep 21, 2015 #8
    California has more of an issue than just rising sea levels, the group beneath them is literally changing. Human activity is causing the ground water to disappear. This is causing two major problems to the stability of the coastline: The missing water contained a lot of volume, and we are starting to see sinkholes. That can be disastrous in local areas but the water also does something worse. It has weight, and with that weight gone, the crust is actually getting lighter and floating higher in the mantle. This is causing stress over a much larger area of the fault line.
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