"You've got to deal with the fact that it's happening.
And what are you going to do with those of us on the edge?"
Grayson Chesser's ancestors came to Chesapeake Bay four centuries ago. Now he's watching his seaside town of Saxis succumb to sea level rise.
All along the ragged shore of Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic coast of Delmarva Peninsula, north into New England and south into Florida, along the Gulf Coast and parts of the West Coast, people, businesses and governments are confronting rising seas not as a future possibility. For them, the ocean's rise is a troubling everyday reality.
In cities like Norfolk, Va., and Annapolis, Md., coastal flooding has become more frequent. Beyond the cities, seawater and tidal marsh have consumed farmland and several once-inhabited islands. Here in Accomack County alone, encroaching seawater is converting an estimated 50 acres of farmland into wetlands each year...
In many places, including much of the U.S. Eastern Seaboard, an additional factor makes the problem worse: The land is sinking. This process, known as subsidence, is due in part to inexorable geological shifts. But another major cause is the extraction of water from underground reservoirs for industrial and public water resources. As aquifers are drained, the land above them drops...
The rich and famous are not spared either. Last year, Vanity Fair published an article exploring what's already happened to the beachfront homes of Hollywood's big names in Malibu.
The stars have lost their fight to save their magnificent beach and now they're fighting to defend their homes - for a while longer.
The "old money" homes of Nantucket aren't being spared either.