“Miami is on its way to becoming an American Atlantis”

Two Fridays ago about thirteen inches of rain fell in North Miami, Aventura, and Hallendale. Roads became impassable. Sudden monsoon-like squalls are a fact of life in South Florida, but the state is less and less able to deal with the consequences. Looks like it doesn’t matter:

You would never know it from looking at Miami today. Rivers of money are flowing in from Latin America, Europe and beyond, new upscale shopping malls are opening, and the skyline is crowded with construction cranes. But the unavoidable truth is that sea levels are rising and Miami is on its way to becoming an American Atlantis. It may be another century before the city is completely underwater (though some more-pessimistic­ scientists predict it could be much sooner), but life in the vibrant metropolis of 5.5 million people will begin to dissolve much quicker, most likely within a few decades. The rising waters will destroy Miami slowly, by seeping into wiring, roads, building foundations and drinking-water supplies – and quickly, by increasing the destructive power of hurricanes. “Miami, as we know it today, is doomed,” says Harold Wanless, the chairman of the department of geological sciences at the University of Miami. “It’s not a question of if. It’s a question of when.”

When we elect a homunculus as governor, we can’t expect the legislature’s veto-proof majority to be much better.

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