The impact of climate change is finally coming home to roost as North America contends with searing droughts and floods. The Florida building collapse is another instance of the role of climate change as coastal areas become more vulnerable to collapse.
Years of exposure to corrosive salt air and persistent water leaks had damaged the foundations leading to the tragic collapse, reported the New York Times. As salty water entered land areas, it pushed up through significant cracks and breaks in the concrete.
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Higher Sea Levels And The Resulting Corrosion Contributes To Florida Building Collapse
Other buildings in the greater Miami areas are already facing the prospect of another Florida building collapse as higher sea levels cause dangerous levels of corrosion and could lead to expensive efforts to control them.
It has been estimated that Miami alone would need to spend at least $3.8 billion over the next 4 decades to keep away the ocean from the city’s infrastructure.
While officials have said that early signs indicated damage to its foundation and columns in the underground garage, scientists have pointed out that the increased exposure to saltwater caused by rising seas had a major role to play in weakening the building’s core structure.
They have pointed out that the Florida building collapse should be a fair warning to coastal communities that climate change and the accompanying threats are much nearer than earlier feared. And the consequences are deadly.
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Florida is among the coastal states that have already witnessed drastic changes caused by climate change. High tide floods have become more common and people have been forced to alter travel routes regularly to get away from seawater. Such high sea levels are exposing precarious infrastructure to the corroding effects of seawater.
President Biden ran on the climate platform among other issues and it is now up to his administration to make the right moves immediately to fix the infrastructure and make them immune to the massive storms, salt-water ingress, heat waves, and fires that reveal that climate changes in right at our doorsteps and not a problem in some future era.
The heat waves burning through the North and Western US and Canada are getting more frequent and have led to an unthinkable spike in temperatures.