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How sea level rise affects San Juan Island

Friends of the San Juans and scientists from Coastal Geologic Services have researched and mapped sea level rise predictions for San Juan County shorelines.

The maps highlight where the most rapid flooding will be and where sand and gravel shores will be “squeezed” when sea level rises. This will help decision-makers, scientists and planners understand where shoreline habitats are likely to be most strained.

Shoreline armoring, homes and docks can impact the natural sediment processes that create and maintain our beaches, making them less resilient, or adaptable, to changes such as sea level rise.

The majority of the shores in the county appear to be relatively resilient, or adaptable, to the projected impacts of sea level rise.

Risk can be reduced through restoration such as removal of hard armoring.

The new sea level rise maps can be viewed at www.sanjuans.org.

For info, call 378-2319.

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