Why King Tides Are Getting Much Worse Each Year

flooding-norfolk-streets

NOAA Data.

We have a story (airing at 7 PM tonight) about the king tide flooding at Oak Orchard, in Sussex County (DE), but actually there were flooding issues up and down the Eastern Sea-board this week, from Miami to New Jersey.  These highest astronomical tides of the year are a sobering reminder that the sea is indeed rising, and at an increasing rate. NOAA data shows that Annapolis in 1960 had an average of 5 flood days each year. Now, it averages over 44!

The sea here on Delmarva has risen around 1.5 to 2 inches since this century began, and look at the charts below to see the rate from various gauges. The gauges at the Chesapeake bay Bridge Tunnel are showing a rate of over 2 inches each decade now. You can do the math for yourself 25 mm is one inch.

This image is from a special report on rising seas from Reuters.

This image is from a special report on rising seas from Reuters. The data is for Annapolis.

Look at the tide levels at the Bay Bridge Tunnel:

8638863

Here are others:

8557380 8638610

You can read more about this in a special report from NOAA HERE.

Below is more from NOAA

Top ten U.S. areas with an increase nuisance flooding*
 
“Nuisance level”:
Meters above mean higher high water mark
Average nuisance flood days, 1957-1963
Average nuisance flood days, 2007-2013
Percent Increase
Annapolis, Md.
0.29
3.8
39.3
925
Baltimore, Md.
0.41
1.3
13.1
922
Atlantic City, N.J.
0.43
3.1
24.6
682
Philadelphia, Pa.
0.49
1.6
12.0
650
Sandy Hook, N.J.
0.45
3.3
23.9
626
Port Isabel, Texas
0.34
2.1
13.9
547
Charleston, S.C.
0.38
4.6
23.3
409
Washington, D.C.
0.31
6.3
29.7
373
San Francisco, Calif.
0.35
2.0
9.3
364
Norfolk, Va.
0.53
1.7
7.3
325
* More than one flood on average between 1957-1963, and for nuisance levels above 0.25 meters.