According to the latest projections, sea level in the Humboldt Bay area will rise 1 foot by 2030, 2 feet by 2050, and 3 feet by 2060. The primary impacts from sea level rise are increases in flooding and erosion. Sea level rise will expand the area vulnerable to flooding during major storms, as well as in the rare but catastrophic event of a major tsunami. 

The term 100-year flood is used as a standard for planning, insurance, and environmental analysis.  People, infrastructure, and property are already located in areas vulnerable to flooding from a 100-year event. Sea level rise will cause more frequent—and more damaging—floods to those already at risk and will increase the size of the coastal floodplain, placing new areas at risk to flooding.

 

King Tides are the highest tides of the year which happen during full or new moons around the winster solstice. They provide a glimpse into the future, when higher tides will become more frequent as sea level rises.

On the north end of Eureka, along Eureka Slough just behind Target, there's a pole showing the height of the water level. And there's a sign explaining the relationship between certain water levels and scientific projections of sea level rise.

On Tues. and Wed. (Nov. 26-27), the first “King Tides” of this winter will coincide with a winter storm, which could lead to coastal flooding. Be very cautious of rising water, eroding shoreline, flooded roadways, and high winds. 

Baykeeper volunteers have been documenting King Tides since 2011. To get involved, all you need is a camera or a smartphone. Submit photos to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Photo: Arcata's Wastewater Treatment Facility, 12-14-16. Photo by Rich Ridenhour. 


At 11:30 am on Wed. Dec. 14, Humboldt Baykeeper and Sea Level Rise Planner Aldaron Laird will host a tour during the highest tide of 2016-17. The tide is predicted to reach 8.6' at noon, although it could be up to a foot higher in stormy conditions.

 

We'll meet at the Arcata Wastewater Treatment Facility on South G Street. From there, we'll walk to the King Tides Observation Bench, which was donated to the City by Aldaron & Christy Laird in January.