By Andrew Nusca
Posting in Architecture
How should a low-lying city like New York deal with the rising sea levels associated with global warming? Five design and architecture firms devise solutions.
Regardless of your political stance on global warming, we can all agree that rising sea levels threaten the highly populated urban areas that line our nations' shores. From Venice to Miami, Mumbai to Osaka, Tokyo to New Orleans, it's clear that many of the world's most picturesque cities are also the most vulnerable -- along with the millions upon millions of residents that call them home.
But this is no movie -- this is the real deal. What's the smartest way we can help preserve our most vulnerable coastal cities?
Barry Bergdoll, head of the architecture and design department at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, tasked five leading designers with devising a solution for that city, located on the edge of the northeastern United States, an area twice as susceptible to rising sea levels, according to a 2009 Florida State University study.
The challenge: Figure out how a low-lying metropolis can handle rising sea levels and violent storm surges.
Their answers: Everything from sponge-like porous streets, to recycled reefs, to oyster farms to simply building right on top of the water.
Here's Adam Yarinsky and Stephen Cassell from the city's Architecture Research Office, or ARO, explaining the solutions with dlandstudio's Susannah Drake:
The five firms' solutions are as follows:
- "New Urban Ground" by ARO and dlandstudio;
- "Water Proving Ground" by LTL Architects;
- "Oyster-Tecture" by Scape;
- "Working Waterline" by Matthew Baird Architects; and
- "New Aqueous City" by nArchitects
All five will be featured in the upcoming MoMa exhibit, "Rising Currents: Projects for New York's Waterfront," which opens on March 24.
Mar 1, 2010
... of what happens when people fiercely, and mindlessly cling to an untenable location. (or viewpoint) Venice rose to prominence on the spice-trade, the circumvention of which Columbus used as a selling-point to the royalty of Spain to back his adventures. Others eventually succeeded where he failed, and Venice's fortunes plummeted as a result, but Venice did not... unfortunately. Where once a case could be made for maintaining a business presence on an over-crowded and sinking island (like New Orleans, or Manhattan) with all the other merchants, the primary reason for such madness has long since evaporated. Any further scrabbling for sustaining that location has more to do with sentimentality and sheer stubbornness than with any real value. In other words, when the tides rise, don't waste time bailing water, blaming well-diggers, or shoring up old buildings: MOVE! By the way, sea-levels AND land-levels have been changing since the beginning of time. It's no one's fault, and no one can do anything about it except to avoid getting too attached to low-lying areas.
There is one way and that is build a very high /thick wall around rhe coast line of New York /Manhattan etc / or the other way is to drill deep into the sea bed and make wells like an empty oil field so the sea level drops instead of rising.
The sky is falling.. the sky is falling... Send all your money to Al Gore and then off yourself, you degenerate Earth spoilers. How about New Orleans ? Are you forgetting about them? Maybe you are racists.
Global warming by man means there is a source of heat warming the atmosphere and that would change climate. All of the argument exists because academia is literally blind to temperature. Education uses calculators for important temperature consideration when building on the surface of the planet. Finding the cause of urban heat islands and how they use massive energy responding to urban heat island produced important information we couldn't qualify before. It is thought to be slightly warmer in urban areas instead of the fact solar interaction with every building is producing heat and in some cases close to boiling temperature. In the summer, we responded with massive energy waste in the billions and in the winter, buildings are heating the atmosphere without emissions produced. Why would we ignore development that is cooking and blame this on C02? We couldn't see it. Here is a link to see infrared time lapsed video showing buildings being radiated right after sunrise. Look at the link and use paint, shade or coatings to stop the heat. Building higher isn't addressing the source of the problems. http://www.thermoguy.com/urbanheat.html
No one has yet mentioned Micronesia, a nation that has been after the United Nations for decades for compensation for loss of land area due to rising ocean levels. Trouble is, the UN, that bastion of Climate Change DENIERS, simply cannot find ANY EVIDENCE of rising sea levels there. I suppose the sea level might be different in New York - maybe due to all the hot air there? Fact is we should address CO2 emissions, but it is nonsense to do it unilaterly, or to wreck the world economy in the process. The EPA is currently about to wreck the auto business while virtually ignoring the other 80% of CO2 emissions generated in the US. Why? It fits the liberal agenda. There are other solutions; atomic power is a good one. Near where I live, in Moss Landing, CA, is a pilot plant making cement using CO2 from a fossil fuel fired PG&E generating plant - cement manufacturing being one of the largest sources of CO2 emissions - but has anyone heard about this? In earlier comments, I saw a denier of the little Ice Age in the 1700s - I guess that painting of Washington crossing the Potomac amid ice floes was science fiction? Have you seen those on the Potomac lately? And for those who deny natural cycles, why do you think Vikings named their newly discovered territory "Greenland?" Not real estate hype - they settled there and farmed the land for nearly 400 years, until it got too cold again - as it still is. Vinyards also flourished in England during that period, but not now. Things change. I see predictions of disaster from a 1 or 2 degree temperature change; zealots point to Venus as our future - but I don't think so.
"Regardless of your political stance on global warming, we can all agree that rising sea levels threaten the highly populated urban areas that line our nations? shores." Regardless of your political stance, you probably find the sentence above irritating. Kudos to Mr Nusca. So how much is the sea rising on NY? How much has it risen in the past? What's the projection? Anytime one points to a historical marker of sea level that shows little change today, such as the 1841 sea level benchmark on the 'Isle of the Dead', Tasmania, climate alarmists will sputter that the rising sea level does not effect all parts of the ocean equally. If we accept that statement, which I'm not sure is the wiser course but for the sake of discussion, then as a corollary one can't uniformly predict future sea levels anywhere, making sea level a local phenomena, again, an idea that seems geometrically challenged but there you go.
...as it has for the last 10,000+ years. (or approximately 9,850 years before the advent of the industrial revolution) There are few geological features of this planet that are more temporary than coastlines. They are constantly changing due to water level, tides, wind, rain, continental movement or volcanic activity. Andrew asks a practical question: What do we do? Change happens, regardless of who thinks who is at fault.
The real fly in the ointment is, the increase in the sealevel of the Atlantic Ocean is zero, and will continue to be zero, despite this gloom and doom emanating from the leftest troglydites. Don't hand me a blizzard of what may or may not be 'science'. Just show me the actual situation on the ground. As with every single, without exception, prediction from the left, the continued refusal of reality to cooperate with this loonieness will, in the fullness of time, reveal its complete lack of merit. The result of this revelation will be, as it has been without exception, for the left to pretend they never said that and to move on to yet another equally idiotic scare senario, devised once again by their fantastical and dishonest version of 'science' and enforced by screeching accusations of denial.
eclipx -- Good job of putting complex issues into simplistic terms. I seriously doubt if more than 1:100 will grasp the the exponential effect of crossing the permafrost boundary will have on the tentative timeline of anticipated events?
First of all, recognize that New York should not be saved. It is the epicenter of everything that's wrong with the world. Following a cue from our colonial ancestors I would recommend we burn Lloyd Blankfein at the stake. Perhaps then the healing can begin. As for New York, let it drown. The Big Apple is rotten to the core.
Get Real! Governor's Island should long ago have been transferred to The Netherlands. It would then have been used for a re-creation of New Amsterdam and as a showcase of ancient and up to date Dutch sea control technology,(if at all applicable to a deep water port), to the protection of the lowlands of the region. This would give fifty or a hundred years to complete a mandated move to higher ground. All insurance for low lying or surge exposed structures must be rapidly phased out. All tax payer supported subsidies for any projects in vulnerable areas should be immediately ended. As a stopgap all shared and independent utilities should be moved to what would be the current fifth story level and the lower four stories and foundations filled in. There are still some unleveled high spots left which could be used. Since New York Harbor is no longer utilized as such it should be abandoned for commercial use.... Sorry that I will not be around in my kayak to witness the event. Fred Feingold
To explain why pockets of gases exist, you need to understand some fundamental chemistry. Polar molecules do not readily mix with non-polar molecules. Water, which makes up most of our atmosphere, is polar, and carbon dioxide is non-polar. For this reason, you will find pockets of carbon dioxide. So even though there is in fact cabon dioxide mixed in throughout the atmosphere because it hasn't formed a nifty little pocket yet with other carbon dioxide molecules you will also find large pockets of carbon dioxide separated and more concentrated. These areas will be dramatically affected while the whole atmosphere of our planet will still continue to be affected by the carbon dioxide that happens to be mixed in and not "pocketed". Carbon dioxide is also heavier than most other air molecules like nitrogen and oxygen so it sinks to the lower atmosphere where it's even easier for it to maintain its level of heat.
Another glacier in our own backyard that's disappearing: http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2009/3046/
Almost forgot... the rising of the ocean will be due to glaciers melting... not icebergs. Icebergs already displace the water. So the Greenland glaciers disappearing is a REALLY BAD THING. That's water will will melt off land INTO the ocean raising the ocean level. It's already occuring. Here is a link to satellite images of Greenland's glaciers disappearing: http://currents.ucsc.edu/05-06/11-14/glacier.asp And here is a link to the mapping of CO2 levels throughout the globe showing pockets of CO2 that are higher than other places which would result in those places being warmer: http://geology.com/nasa/carbon-dioxide-map/
No problem :-) I'll give you the PPM now and the PPM before we started releasing billions of pounds of CO2 into the atmosphere every day. I'll also point you to three sources. One of which is a progressive counter and shows you the levels as of today. Another of the articles explains why some people are confused as to what level is a really bad level. And finally the third article is a projected outlook given that we continue to eradicate the rainforest which is a primary sink for CO2. We are currently at 388 parts per million and rising by one to three points per year which will accelerate the more plant life we remove. Pre-Industrial levels were at 275. Articles: http://co2now.org/index.php/current-co2/co2-now/current-data-atmospheric-co2.html http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/12/27/AR2007122701942.html http://www.hydrogen.co.uk/h2_now/journal/articles/2_global_warming.htm In continuing, proof that CO2 is a heat trapping gas can be replicated with a simple experiment. CO2 actually absorbs infrared light which is given off plentifully by our friend, as well as foe, the sun. You may take an airtight glass or plastic container, fill it with a mixture of CO2 and air (start at 275 PPM to replicate pre-Industrial levels) and place it outside where infrared light from the sun hits it throughout the day. Attach some kind of temperature gauge to it. One of those fish tank sticker temperature indicators would probably be fine but I'd prefer to put a temperature gauge inside the container where it can be easily read and you can be guaranteed the temperature sticker is not just heating up because the sun is shining on it. Also make sure the temperature gauge is not metal which would give you an inaccurate reading as metal absorbs heat from the sun too readily. Record the temperature each day around the time the sun starts to get low in the sky. Once you reach a steady temperature, add more CO2 to the container. This could be accomplished by attaching a hose to the container that connects to a CO2 source. Oh yeah... make sure you have some kind of CO2 reader in the container as well so you can record the PPM along with the temperature. Over several days increase the amount of CO2 incrementally. Record the temperature after a couple of days and then add more CO2. You will eventually begin to understand why Venus is so hot. There is no better example than you performing this experiment for yourself. That will be your proof. There is, of course, a tipping point for our planet. What this means is that there are other greenhouse gases like methane (which is FAR more powerful of a heat trapping gas than CO2) trapped in frozen ground near the poles or around the planet in other cold places and very deep in the ocean where it gets extremely cold. When these gases escape because the areas they are contained in warm up or melt, our situation on this planet will be far worse and could actually lead to the erradication of most if not all living species. Things like this have happened before in the regular cycle of our planet. Just because it's a regular cycle doesn't mean we should give in to it and go the way of the dinosaurs. Regarding whatever King of East Anglica you're talking about, not all areas of the planet will be immediately affected by global warming. Some places will stay the same temperature because of the way the air circulates in their part of the world. The first places you will most likely notice changes occuring are desert areas. Those areas will most likely begin to expand and get worse. Our planet as well will not notice too many changes extremely quickly at this point. It will be several more years before the damage becomes apparent. Once the tipping point is reached, a domino effect will occur. The glaciers and poles will melt faster and faster during the warmer months which in turn will feed the entire global affect. Methane will seep out quicker and quicker from the ground breaking free from its frozen confines. Eventually nothing we do will matter short of somehow sucking up all the greenhouse gases. I believe one of the artciles I provided shares evidence of Greenland's glaciers slowly but surely disappearing. In any case, it's quite obvious the planet is warming. The north pole was actually passable recently for the first time in recorded history and companies are beginning to eye oil reserves that are now available there as well as planning summer boat trips through the area to diminish the cost of other routes. CO2 is undeniably an efficient heat absorbing gas and it only makes sense that releasing it into our atmosphere will eventually heat up our planet if you are to believe it hasn't already.
Hey "eclipx" Since you are such a genius, how many PPM is the ratio of CO2 to other gases? While you are at it please demonstrate conclusively (as a scientist would do) that CO2 is undoubtedly the couse of any warming. Especially since last week your King of East Angilca admitted that there has been no warming in the last 10 years.
On a brighter note, at least the excess CO2 will allow plants to grow better in areas that haven't completely dried up during the summer. :-)
Oh... and to those who argue against global warming in light of the blizzards we've been having... keep in mind that warm air holds more water. This is science as well so you can test it yourself. Also keep in mind that the poles will still be freezing cold (maybe not as freezing cold but still freezing cold). When you mix the warm air that spins around the equator with the cold air from the poles, since cold air doesn't hold water in it nearly as well, the warm air touching the cold air gets cold and releases it's water. During the months when the north pole doesn't receive any sunlight, the air there gets REALLY COLD and starts to affect the air around it. I'd draw you a picture, but there's no tool at this site for that. So the jet stream, which is a band of air that moves around the Earth because the Earth spins, drops down in various places on various days throughout the winter making it really cold all of a sudden in and around those places. Then the warm air that was near that place (think global not citywide or township-wide) all of a sudden gets cold and releases all the water it was holding. Wow! It's a big-a** snow storm! Then all the dumb f**ks get to argue against global warming! So these blizzards should actually get worse as global warming increases so long as the poles contain freezing air that can drop down during the winter. I really wish there was some kind of IQ requirement for people "serving" our country.
I don't deny that ocean levels "could" rise, my only point is, is that man causing it is politically motivated and is false. And actually, I am not convinced that the rise in water levels will be significant. Fact is, we can't predict the future, we can only observe the present! And it is foolish to extrapolate current events into the future.
So for the religious nut cases (the majority of the human race) including the fools who think global warming can't possibly be caused by man... let's take a lesson in physics. This is something you can personally take time to prove, by the way, ...which makes it science. "There are scientists out there who believe global warming is not influenced by man," you say? Well, those scientists most likely also believe that the Earth is only 6,000 years old like all those religious nut cases. So they are automatically discounted for their lower IQs so I'd advise you not to listen to them. I'm also not discounting the natural flow of Earth's events but keep in mind we are not only seriously accelerating them, but even counteracting them. As a preface it should be noted that in the 1700's we were headed into a mini ice age but the Industrial Revolution totally counteracted it. Now... the science. The properties of CO2 include absorption of heat. When something absorbs heat... it gets hot. :-) Our country alone outputs billions of pounds of CO2 PER DAY by driving around in our cars and running certain factories. When you start to saturate an environment with a gas that absorbs heat... guess what happens?... I'll give you 3 guesses... can't figure it out? IQ holding you back? The environment gets WARMer. Now go take some classes and "learn" you a thing or two.
Increased enery costs is the argument? Yeah, the price of a gallon of gas just keeps going down, doesn't it? And we keep sending our dollars overseas to other countries to get our oil fix. Now there is a brilliant model to keep going! And so what if it is nature melting ice? When you have water in your lobby you need a plan. Actually you needed a plan a while back, so it is time to think about this stuff.
Man caused global warming is false. If you look back in the history of the earth, warming and cooling occurs periodically, and is related to sunspots and other natural phenomenon. The case for human caused global warming is strictly political and designed to extract more $$ from the American people from increased energy costs and regulations. If you believe that, then I have this bridge in Ariz....
I think we should spend more money that we don't have to fix yet another fictional problem based on pseudo science propagated by the leftist lie machine. It will, after-all, produce green jobs for us all. A picturesque rainbow will then hover over the city and doves will fly. It all makes sense to me. You know all that massive snow the East Coast has been receiving this winter has to go somewhere. May be that's where all the water is coming from !
I want to know how New York City is going to deal with the coming Ice Age. How are they going to stop the glaciers from overrunning the city? I propose we learn how to increase global temperatures to prevent the next Ice Age. I mean, we can clearly agree that there have been numerous Ice Ages throughout the millenia, and another is bound to happen, so what are we going to do to prevent it?
It's not nonsense. Rising sea levels DO threaten the highly populated urban areas. You can be a denier and say that there isn't global warming and therefore sea levels aren't rising. He's not debating whether or not rising sea levels will actually occur. In a similar way, you can say that water over your head will cause you to drown, bullets shot into your head will cause you to bleed, and alien space ships landing on your head will crush it. He's not stating the probablity that those events will happen, just what the end result will be if it does happen.
"Regardless of your political stance on global warming, we can all agree that rising sea levels threaten the highly populated urban areas that line our nations? shores." May I suggest that this statement is nonsense. The political stance of global climate change deniers is that there is NO danger from rising sea levels.
I think that saying that man causing global warming is a very naive and is not true. Yes I agree that global warming has occurred many times in Earth's history in the same cycle as the ice ages but never in global history has so much carbon dioxide, methane and other potent greenhouse gasses been released into the atmosphere on a day to day basis. So I think that your view that global warming was not created by man is one which needs more than just opinion to base its self upon.