SCETV Documentary | Sea Change
People. Are past the point of being interested. In the debate of whether time it changes real or not they just say I want somebody to do something about this and you. Can debate all day long whether it's man-made or not that is actually not the point, it's. Amazing. How few, people won't talk about climate change they. Want to totally, dismiss, it, the. Climate, in, the long term can. Have an impact on human. Health. What. Do we say who do we save do. We save these, wonderful, national monuments, do we save the culture do we save the people, if. We look just at the environment, without looking at the economic, and social structure. We're, missing two parts of a very important equation. Businesses. Jess's, exposed to climate change as individuals, as. Communities as. The, environment. But. We really need to focus on our vulnerable populations, our. Elderly, our disabled, are economically, challenged, we know they're our most at-risk population. We just know that can. Big problems, be solved in the present political environment. And. The answer unfortunately I don't. But. The bottom line is that what is undeniable. Here what is undeniable. Is that sea level has risen and, it is rising faster, than it was. Funding. For this program is, provided by. The. Medical University of South Carolina, public. Information, and community, outreach. MUSC. Changing. What's possible. Rocky coasts of Maine to the warm beaches of Florida the, Atlantic coast and the ocean beyond provide. Americans, with many. Of the things that, make life worth. Living, the. Atlantic connects, divides. And, defines. It's. A muse for poets. And a subject, for artists and let's. Face it on, a warm summer day there's. Hardly a better place to be than a sandy shore. Science. And observation, tell us that, sea levels are rising though. There's hardly anywhere, where. It's more apparent, than right here at hunting Island State Park in South Carolina, here.
At The water's edge it's easy to, see the damage that's done by. Rising sea levels and storm surge and when, this happens, this, historically, popular, state park has, to close to visitors. It's. Got a roading beaches, and incredibly. Damaged dunes and. Now all, but two of the cabins, that formerly dotted this island are completely. Gone and it's. Not an isolated, example. Along. The 200. Mile stretch of coastline that runs from Myrtle Beach South Carolina down. To Savannah Georgia which, by the way is, home to a rapidly, growing population. Military. Bases port cities tourist destinations, in a thriving seafood, economy a rising. Tide of uncertainty, is, accompanied, rising. Sea levels it's. All about change sea. Change. You. See this beautiful harbour, behind. Us in, the last hundred years it's, already known that it's, risen 18. Inches, over. The next 30, to 40 years its, projected, it could easily rise. Another. Foot and a half to. Two and a half feet. 18. To 30 inches, so. If you look at the existing. Quote. Nuisance. Flooding that we have if you add another, two feet on top of that it's. Projected. That downtown, Charleston, and major parts, of West Ashley in really. Coastal. South Carolina, could. Not only have nuisance. Flooding but, flooding, that directly, impacts, our, daily life the. Greater Grand Strand is very vulnerable to, what's going to happen with climate change it's, it's the rising ocean, it's, the marine life it's our tourism, it's, the cultural, effects like for example the sweetgrass baskets they. Are, a part of our culture and they're going to disappear, when they're sweetgrass disappears. You. Know I see some of the sweetgrass. Seamas, door it's dying, at, the roots of, it and I. Think it's probably. From the water level, but. It's it's so long and start rotting in the. Root of it I. Think. The. Sea level has something, to do with that of. Course climate change is going to have a tremendous, effect on our, cultural resources, particularly. In our, coastal parks but it could be any park really because we when. We look at the climate change science, we know it's not just coastal. Effects. Droughts, erosion. Storm. Events, these are things that are not limited to the codes so all of, our part, projects. Are being affected, by climate change, and that's how I think, that's the reason why the National Park Service's, implemented. A climate change response. Strategy. There's, no way that you can deny, that we. Have more high water events, whether it's on the US. Highway 80 causeway. Heading out Tybee Island and. Even the storms that affect. Us you, know whether it's the marsh degradation, again. Potentially, the settling, of our our dike, system and a number of different you know factors, I mean, it's it's, something that you know it's eye-opening you. Know when you come out here especially on any, of the spring or king tides that we have where, you see how close the water is on a perfectly.
Sunny Beautiful, day and, then. You add in the specter of a huge storm coming through, here with, a a large storm, surge and the kind of damage that it can, be I mean the. Weather is awesome and. It's. Something that you have to be careful of you have to be watchful, and mindful, of you. Can ride through the South Carolina's Lowcountry whether, its Georgetown. Charleston. Colleton, County and you. Grow cross word lots of islands, and they're connected, by cosway's and it. Is not rare, that. On a high tide or in pre-paid king tide because, what he's already covered, I'm seeing more and more and more the. Effects of flooding. At, high tides during, storms. And not even significant, storms just a, nice. Storm that comes in in the evening because it's hot during, the day I'm. Seeing. The effects, on farming. With. Floods, happening. In fields I'm just seeing it on, accessibility. On our roadways being. Able to get to one, community, and, not. Being able to get to another I think, that that climate, change is, probably. And, and. I don't, necessarily spend. A lot of time in hyperbole, but I think it is probably, the most significant. Issue facing. Us as a human species today, it. Has been through the last 50, to 75. Years in, particular that, we've been collecting, data we, have been analyzing that data we. Have been able to empirically. By observation. And experimentation. Show, that our planet, is changing, not. Just changing but changing, on a very rapid, basis, when, we are concerned about possible. Warming, of the climate we. Have to ask ourselves what. Impact, can. Warming. Of the, air in the atmosphere have. To do or, have, on. Mosquito-borne. Diseases so, there. Are several ways to answer that. One. Way is to think that, as the, climate warms, that. Insects, which are more common in tropical, or. Equatorial, regions. Would, be able to survive, and thrive at. Higher. Latitudes. North of the Equator or for, our friends in South America south, of the equator as well so. That we have a change in latitude, and what, might. Be the disease, that we think about as being in South. America, or, Central America or the, Caribbean could. Start to creep up further, north into the, USA, climate. Change is a global phenomenon doesn't mean everybody, gets the same deal I change. Happens, and kind of plays out regionally, and there's lots of feedbacks, within the system on different temporal. And spacial scales so. You could, be in one area that has not been getting a lot of change saying this is not happening you, can be in another area that is experiencing, a lot of changing going, anecdotally. I perceive. It happening and so, there's a lot of that kind of complexity, within the system that influences. I think people's perceptions, people. Can see it they can feel it they can touch it in ways, that weren't the case I mean literally you're seeing the effects of flooding.
There Are farm flooded in a way that I've never seen over the course of my 57. Years on earth with. This last storm and you're, also seeing a level of consensus, within the scientific community that's, never been there before the, climate change issues that a place like Tybee Island are. Going to face in the future are really no different than the ones that they've been facing for as, long as they've been there which is these. Barrier. Islands, of sand are dunes that move around and, once you build roads. And houses and, infrastructure. On them you, tend. To want to stabilize that sand, dune and they've, done, all manner, of stabilization, over, the years groins, jetty, riprap. Pumping. Sand and renourishment, seems, to be the the main choice now but. This is just an ongoing process, and with sea level rise it's. Just going to have to continue. It's going to have to, keep. Up and. The infrastructure, on the island is going to have to keep up the roads are going to have to be raised or a bridge made if, you want to maintain the. The. Community, and the, economy of, a. Vulnerable. Barrier, island, during. The recent storm hurricane Matthew, it, was brought to our attention and, really what I thought was a profound, statement of. The. The impact, that Hunting Island had with the destruction, that Matthew, did for hunting Island and someone. Said but, you know what hunting, island did her job and, protected. Beaufort and, so. It's the natural part of a barrier island protecting. The mainland, but, it's also that complicated, standpoint, of hunting. Island and REE nourishing, and taking care of this beach protects. Infrastructure. Like roads water. Sewer. Economic. Infrastructure, all of those kind of things have to be have, to be brought in the plate when you make the decisions, of of do. We continue to renew do we continue to maintain and, preserve and protect these islands, when. You're talking about climate. Change and sea level rise there. Is a, really. Really a direct a direct, effect on our, groundwater systems, here in the coastal community, and the. Chatham, County and, coastal, Georgia area even, portions. Of Florida and whatnot we pull our drinking water from the ground from, the Floridan Aquifer as, a whole huge. System, and highly. Pristine, system, so, when, you start to see as behind, us the Savannah River which, is. Directly. Synched. Up with where we're pulling our groundwater system, you, start to over time you will possibly, see an impact you know of climate change higher waters, higher tides and that water is going to push further up the Savannah River basically, and then you can possibly see an impact on your drinking water systems, several. Of the surface water intakes in the windy Bay Area I actually in play when, you look at the current projections, of sea level rise which, would ultimately mean that if they if you have any type of saltwater intrusion you. Lose a good, quantity, of your current fresh water supply now that within itself, may. Be tenuous. When you coupled that to the population growth, that becomes. Not, just a passing, concern but a serious, concern to lose any access. To fresh water supplies. Rising. Sea level increases. In salinity, and an overall rise in temperature, are, clearly having an impact on our coastal, communities and. Beyond, there's. Historic, flooding, much. More powerful, storm surges and many, other threats to our environment. But. What are the impacts how. Severe, and how, far did they go beyond what we so easily see, like, here on a barrier island and what. About our health how. Are the dynamics, of so much change, presenting. New health issues or, exacerbating. Existing. Ones. The. Health impacts. For. The people on the ground, from. Climate, change will, include, a, lot of ailments, that we relate, to heat. Heat. Stress. Strokes. Respiratory. Diseases.
Digestive. Diseases, as well, as an exacerbation. Of. Illnesses. That already. Exists. Pre-existing. Conditions. Those. Are the vulnerable. People that we're talking about what. Will happen to, them is our concern, because, many, of those people still unfortunately, do not have health care they, do not visit their doctors, regularly they. Do not have a system. That, will protect them, and help, to decrease the. Impacts, and help them address, what they're already dealing with when. Their heat waves. Some, people have heat, stroke and sometimes, you even hear about people dying, for example, often. Older people, who are living perhaps. Without air-conditioning but. That would be a direct effect of the heat another, example, could. Be increased. Severe, weather, this. Year we've seen that with for. Example hurricanes, and flooding in Texas, and, Florida and Puerto Rico and so forth and the. Weather experts, can. Explain that, to us in greater detail but as, the atmosphere, warms we have more moisture. Content, in the air and, more chance for hurricanes, and heavy rainfall, but. From my point of view as a communicable. Disease physician the. Change that. I'm most concerned about that, could relate to weather might. Be changes, in what are called vector. Borne diseases and. Vector. Borne diseases are, infectious. Diseases, with. The transmission, from one, person, to another it's. Not made to direct. Contact, or through respiratory, droplets, but. Where, a vector, usually. An insect, is, carrying. The, virus or some other pathogen, from. One person, to another. We had a scare here, just recently with Zika virus. We're. Talking about a Zika virus or you know yellow, fever things, like that in, the United States well, in part because we had a winner that came through and sort of clear these things out for the, next season, with. The exception maybe Florida, and Puerto Rico in parts of Texas. You. Know if you have a warming, climate and all sudden, we, move to more and more of a tropical climate and Georgia, and South Carolina places. Like that it. Leaves the specter of all kinds of mosquito-borne. Illnesses, and, threats, and challenges that. Weren't there so I again. There are a whole host of things that go well beyond sea level rise that, come with the possibility, global warming that, we all need to be thinking about. Primary. And certainly the most visible impact of climate change is is, our rising waters, increasing. Flooding, what people, call some people call nuisance, flooding or dry weather flooding, which, basically is a function of higher, sea, levels we've, seen an increase, over the past century of, almost, a foot about. An inch a decade, and what. We also now, know over. The last two or three decades is that that rate is accelerating. Let's, look at the regular tides let's look at the king tides let's. Look over a period of time, at what the change was and within a year. The. The water on my dock had. Risen eight, inches, now. There could be a lot of reasons it could be that more, people built docks that the Greek isn't flowing does, it matter if there's, eight more inches there because.
There's Eight more inches there and we, have a king tide that, means there's going to be eight more inches on top of that if we, have a storm surge of six. Feet that's six feet it's not gonna start here it's, gonna start here so. When we talk about two, and three and four feet we're, adding, that to the. Rain, events, which we for whatever reason. Have been having we're, adding that to the storm surge so. We're we've got a problem that is automatically. Going to be compounded, by nature you. Know we try to stay away from the discussion, of what's causing climate, change and just, say let's look at the reality and let's look at what the records show us and, if you look on NOAA's website, they've got documentation, from the neural early 1900's. That show that the tide has risen in Charleston, a little, over a foot every, hundred years and we expect that to at least be the baseline of what, will happen the. Residents, here are very familiar with localized, flooding it is something we have always had to deal with born. And raised in Savannah and Chatham County and I've known it ever since you know obviously, I've been here almost. Forty five years now and it's. Something they're familiar with and they know that it affects their individual, property, so, we say okay. In your time in your in your life you've. Seen an impact, we've met we're now starting to see roads that have in the past have never flooded over for a long period of time we're now seeing those, more. And more in, the past maybe once, maybe, twice a year now we're seeing them every other month, you, know starting, to major, highways impassable. Here. In the coastal zone we hear a lot on the news they'll be flooding in the usual areas, at the time of high tide during, this rain event because what, level is a little bit higher and I, think if you've lived in long the coast for a while you may have perceived, or noticed that these things seem to happen a little bit more frequently over, over. Longer period of time hold, the chart they're fascinating, charts that show the, number of times downtown, flooded, over the last hundred years versus. Over the last let's say 20 years or so it's, remarkable. It's real and, the, fact is in places like the coast of South Carolina we're, seeing in real visible, and tangible form, rising.
Affective Sea level and, therefore if you're gonna build a road don't. Build it where it's gonna get flooded in every couple years maybe put a little more dirt underneath and, it wouldn't that save money over time and, I think it's interesting to point out to a lot of these problems happen, because we filled creek beds in over time so. Lockwood, Boulevard, wasn't there until 1950. So, it became an impedance then for, drainage. Interior, to the city and many, of the areas that you see in the city that flood so badly like fishburne Street and Wentworth. Street you can literally, lay over the old. Map. Of the city that shows where the creeks are and that's where the flooding is the severus. If. You, go, to what, we call the point the. Corner the point is sort of the Williamsburg, of Beaufort it is the pristinely. Totally. Gentrified. Neighborhood. Where. People have invested, tens. Of thousands, if not millions of, dollars of. Fixing. Up old important. Beautiful. Antebellum. Homes. But, a lot of that land was built on Phil and a, lot of that land you're talking about 12, 14 inches above sea level and of course they were built up back, then but. They. Weren't, built up to, face the future when, we see our. Streets, and. Rivers. Overflowing. Over time that. Will prompt the community, engagement, the, community, awareness and. In fact the need for community. Investment. In the, infrastructure. That will be needed to protect, our community, long term, the. Extreme, weather precipitation. Events the extreme rain events that, we're having if, you couple those with those extreme, high tides you, could go from what was a nuisance, flooding event, five years ago to, a flash flooding event today and, it can happen very quickly we've. Seen the sea level rising we've got the documentation, to historical, documentation, to prove something. Along the lines of about a foot over the past 80 85, years and what that's doing is its inundating. Some of my roads on regular. King. Tides and even on some spring tides the where we're seeing six, a 1012. Inches of water on the roadways during the period of the high tide and we're, getting to a point where we're having to condemn houses, because we can no longer provide, emergency. Services to, those houses with, the more recent hurricane, Matthew I think, whether, good or bad I think that really awakens, a lot of folks to the reality, of what flooding. And climate, change and what sea level rise impacts, can have on the coastal community, one. Of the projections, for the changes that we're seeing and. The global climate is more intense, rainfall. Events and and I think I think one can make a case not. Statistically, arguing. This at the moment but but just, in the last few years he's look at the event. We had here in South Carolina kind, of historic, flooding of this, funneling. Of. The, moisture. In, that corridor up through Columbia and the, amount devastation, it happened that regard and we've seen that event again in Maryland. And then recently, in Louisiana, in Houston. These things are happening and they're, happening more frequently and, we're not really prepared for those kinds of events because they're a change from what, we're used to in our in our weather. The. Wind and currents from hurricane Matthew were going from north to south and, it's. Just remarkable as I explore, these small islands around here how, much damage was done how, much shoreline, was eroded. And how, much debris was blasted, through the remaining, maritime. Live oak forests and that. So that was just a mild you. Know category, one two mild, glancing. Blow hurricane, a major hurricane coming, ashore here. Think. Katrina think, sandy, think, much. Much, greater rearrangement. Of the geography we. Know we had North to northeast, winds or so at the strong points of Matthew, as it came up along. Here and this area. A lot. Of this area into the east toward the ocean was, in the western, edge of the eye wall, of Matthew as it came up so some of the strongest, winds of the storm occurred, here along with some of the highest tide. Levels my, husband. Had a a. 40-foot. Hunter sailboat, and he, had it down in Miami for years and. Knew. That it wasn't the safest place down there to have it and decided, to do some research about where, we'd be a safer, place on the coast and after. A lot of research and talking to friends I was. Evident that da Island marina, was the safest place.
Regarding. Hurricanes, to. Keep, it but obviously. It didn't work out too well for us now as. Of. Hurricane, Matthew, but yeah, our boat is half under water over there right now you. Can see boats that were washed up on the yeah backyards. Of these houses in the marsh and as far away as the airport which I think, six seven miles from here so, they're scattered, all up the river, and some of them has sank where they were. You. Know we lost during Matthew, we lost five, facilities, a, campground. Of a. Couple, of restrooms and in. The decision, after Matthew, is the campground, that is the closest, that, was the closest, to the ocean we. Have abandoned. That campground, and we. Have another campground, that's further back inland this this, better, protected, but, we won't rebuild that campground, this rot on the ocean people. Would love to have a campground, right on the ocean but it's really not sustainable we, had hurricane, Matthew, in October, of 2016. We. Had a tornado, ripped, through the park in May and then, we've just dealt, with hurricane, Irma coming. Through here as well so, there so I, think, we're still trying to kind, of get our wits about ourselves as to what, has taken place over, the, past year, because prior to this there, are a number of instances, but very, few, in fact folks, have always talked about the Georgia Bight and how. We have generally, been protected. Now. As an interpreters, and as historians, here we know that in the 1880s. And 1890s this. Area was heavily impacted, by, hurricane. Activity that. In fact put a tremendous. Amount of water inside, the fort itself so. The fort is not new, to. Extreme, weather events, however. As we have more, well. The. Situation's, around us whether it's sea level rise whether, it's the degradation of. The, marshland, around. Cockspur. Island and along, the Georgia, coastline, as well, as higher, storm, surges we're, seeing a lot more impacts, and we will see a lot more impact. As we move forward honey. Island state park was impacted, greatly by, hurricane herma. It. Did a little. Bit different damage than hurricane Matthew did with, with the first storm we had a lot of tree damage with. This storm we had significant. Flood damage throughout the park. And that salt, water came up so high with the storm surge that it got into a lot of our utilities, our. Power pedestals, in the campground, our. Sewer systems, all that stuff was impacted, greatly by, it the wind was blowing on Armagh from the Northeast, so. It's pushing the Morgan River back up against, across, the runway which is directly behind me and then highway 21, which is off to my right here running north-south about. Three feet of storm surge went, across highway 21, so it was completely blocked in this location along with a number of others the, runway was completely submerged and houses. Across the highway, that were some that faced, the storm surge problem, in Matthew, faced, it again in Arma, in fact, there's one individual, over there who. Had just moved back into his house last, week after doing a full remodelling from the Matthew damaged his, appliances, are still in the cardboard boxes, when armored surge came in and it's all ruined again we. Just got hit by this latest storm and. We. Saw, a level. Of flooding that we've never before seen in our family farm ever yeah. It literally, the the storm, surge picked. Up we have one bridge, that goes into a timber track pick the bridge up off the, pilings, moved, about 50 yards off in the marsh and set it back down you. Know I oh my goodness. That's another weekend, project, we've, been very, resilient. As. We, recover from.
From. Everything that's been thrown at us but. It truly is heartbreaking, to see all this happen to have to come back in here and recover. And if, we you, know if we see an uptick in activity and we have to continually. Do this it, it. Kind of just really. Beats on you thinking. Of what the future. Really. Means for Fort Pulaski what lies ahead and. You. Know it's something that I can't, even I'm, still. Trying to grapple with. Our. Twenty billion, dollar, tourism, industry. Is at, risk and when. The banks realized, that the ocean level is rising, and the, oceanfront, properties, are going to be underwater in a hundred years pretty, soon they're going to start looking maybe 50 years from now they're going to quit lending, on the beach insurance. Companies are going to quit insuring, on the beach and so, rather. Than waiting for that day to happen, let's try to be proactive and, see how we're going to control. The environment so, we keep our tourist economy, strong a, huge. Part of our economic driver in Chatham, County is our historic resources, through the tourism, obviously. We're huge tourism. Community but, to ensure that we, are basically. Taking into account the, economic stability we, also have to ensure that our natural, historic. Resources, and all the wonderful resources that we have around us are also taken care of so it goes very much hand-in-hand, Fort, Pulaski, relies. On the. Fee revenue, that we're able to generate at our entrance station and while. We're still going to see the effects over the next couple of years from. This past year we were closed for a total of three months with these three incidents, so, that's going to affect how we operate, whether. It's our ours who were able to hire and what kind of programs were able to provide our visiting, public over. 80 billion dollars are. Generated. Through tourism, in South Carolina, seven. Hundred and ninety, million dollars in local and state taxes. Are paid, because of the tourism economy that. Generates a, lot of a lot of jobs for people and. Impacts, on local communities so. When we make decisions we now have to be conscious and cognizant, of the fact that we're making decisions that. Impact, people outside, of the gates climate. Change it. Has the potential to, wreak so much havoc, on the velocity, of capital, that's found within a community which is we're talking to economics, here that, it will decrease it to such a level that. That community, just cannot, come back it's on the precipice it goes over the precipice it cannot come back. That. Is a severe. Example. But. It can have, we're. Seeing the, first community, in the United States was. That that actually had to be moved because of climate change was in Louisiana, last year they had to move the entire community. So, that's. At one end of a spectrum to go to the other end in expectrum take a city like Charleston, in the 70s. Charleston, got flooded on average, four times a, year last. Year it was 34, times, 34. Days of business interruption potentially. 34, days of supply chain interruption. 34. Days of, potential. Lack. Of revenues, from tourism, the. Result of the fact that that can be insurance, premiums, going up the cost of business going, up so, anytime you have, decreases. In revenues, and, increases. And expenses. Generally. Not good since. Tourism. Is the number one industry in our state especially, in Charleston, you can see that then the restaurants. Are very much benefited, by the seafood. Being available here and I think that benefits, the men to go out and fix, the ice machines, the men that's service.
The Trawlers, with you. Know their fuel and their ice and also, services. The people that go, out and catch the fish itself catch the shrimp and, so it's, a big part of the South Carolina and especially the low country economy, lives. And livelihoods are, at stake so when you think about the fishing industry for, example if we lose this barrier, protection, of our salt marshes the salt marshes themselves, are nurseries, for all manner of species, then that, sustain, the fishing community, and sustain, human health and consumption for the whole country fisheries, are worth 200 billion dollars and employ 1.7. Million people, so. When these fisheries. Start to change and, move. Out of the region, and. Take that. Economic. Impact with them it affects, our local communities, that are involved, in not, just the fishermen but the restaurant trade tourism, and. Other aspects, as well. Fish. Do have temperature, preferences and the if the waters too warm or, too cold they'll just move and so, that we see in the, southeast for example, we see. Many. Fish moving. Farther north because the waters is their, temperature preferences now farther, north so fish. That supported, important, fisheries are still support important fisheries off of South Carolina things like blue line town fish are. Now supporting, fisheries, off of Virginia, and Delaware and New Jersey, and things. Like black sea bass that support. A fishery off South Carolina are now supporting, a fishery in the Gulf of Maine so the fish, are moving north to. Find the the temperature that they. Prefer, the. The best predictor, of the distribution, of the, marine, life things, that live in the ocean. Our. Temperature, and salinity as, our coast, gets warmer. And. Saltier. We're. Gonna see changes. In the, abundance, and distribution of, things. Some. Things will get less abundance some things will get more abundant, we'll probably see some things we hadn't seen here before and we. May even lose some things if we, lose salt marshes because, we don't allow them to migrate upland, because we built, those up and our, salt marshes get. Smaller and smaller than, the habitat, which, is nursery. For. The larval, stages of marine, life gets, smaller and smaller and it only makes sense as you decrease the habitat, of a, nursery you're going to decrease the productivity. In fisheries we, sort of drawn drawn, lines or drawn barriers, and said no. You. Know we. Have a title of this property, we're not moving or we're not going to allow the the. Natural. Progression. Of, the the marshes, or the oyster reefs to kind of move inland so that's, a particularly, difficult. Thing. To deal with is how do we accommodate. The. Natural. Movement. Of, estuarine. Ecosystems. If. We're going to say now we're going to draw a line here and not allow it to move that. I'm that's, a bit I guess that's what I call, the sea level rise conundrum, for is just how do we deal with that as a society how, do we accommodate what, may need to happen to preserve, our Rs terrine habitats, but. At the same times you know be respectful of, personal. Rights and things we've. Given some thought to the changes, in the, salinity, and the changes, of levels, because we're looking other places to, see who's able. To produce product. That maybe it's not produced here we're actually, looking, for different, types of product when I first got here in the 70s, this was a spot and croaker and flounder, and whiting.
Business, And now it's a triggerfish it's, a tuna. Grouper. Salmon, it's a different type of fish that we're bringing in people are very familiar with grouper. People are very familiar with snapper, you, know and. Alternatives. To that locally, would be trigger fish instead. Of snapper, or tile. Fish instead. Of grouper, you, know those fish are. Abundant. And delicious. When. I talk to fishermen, when I talk to farmers. I'm, just blown away at, the amount of, risk. That, they have to take every, day is different and, at any moment. At. Any moment they're gonna have to make an adjustment and, you have to be willing as a, chef to make. That adjustment with, them and try something different and go a different path we. Are hearing. That shrimp are being found in the Chesapeake, where that never has happened before along. With the changing. Abundant. Times that we are seeing it, seems. Like, and I'm not a scientist, but it seems like things are moving northwards, what, is very, different, as the summer catches, have. Been, significantly. Diminished, this, last year we had about eight weeks of virtually. No shrimp and that. Was not just us it was all, along, the coast so. We. Think it is because, the water temperature was, several. Degrees above, historic. Levels, and that, that we, know affects shrimp, we. Have to close our oyster, beds sometimes, the Gullah people call it hasta. So we have to call close our austere bed sometimes, and, because. Of contamination of, the runoff our, fishermen. Are also affected, by this because of the, oysters, because, of the closing of certain, rivers and, creeks. In this area it's. A huge impact, because this is a Gullah way of life. So. The culture, the, rituals. The the very fabric, that. Coastal. People, live. Every. Day the shrimping. The the, all, of that will be threatened, if we, don't do something about global warming, and climate change, this, is the embark Asian site of. The. Majority of people that were enslaved coming, from West and Central Africa, this. Even. Like the the Charleston. Wharf. Gadsden. Wharf people coming into that location. And then. Being able being. Sent to different plantations. Throughout South Carolina, and here, in the low country especially. This. Is the place where we were brought in West. Africans, and Gullah people were brought in, because. Of our knowledge of growing. Cultivating. And harvesting rice. In West Africa, the. Materials, that we have to get to. Be able to make the coiled, sweetgrass baskets are. Very. Similar to the materials. That we had to get in West Africa, to make their the sweetgrass, baskets they're, the. Sweet grass the bulrush in the, Palmetto. This. Is a part of our heritage. This. But these baskets. Were. Being made ever, since, they brought my ancestors. Over. They. They, made it and use. It for. Utilitarian. Work, and. Down. Through the years we. Started making functional. Baskets, wherein. You use in your home I. Was. Taught this art form, by my mom and my great-grandmother. Over. 49 years ago I can. Say for the bulrush, which grows right at the edge of the marsh water that. May come into play because it's you, know they have to go out with their little boots on and if that's doing, away with the tides and so forth that, takes care of the bulrush, and then, the sweet grass that's found more on dry, land it's. Near, the water brought on waterfront, property. You know what that beach erosion and, so forth when it does away with that there, goes the sweet brass culturally. We. Need to be more aware. Of, that. You know you still have people here who. Farm. People. Who. You. Know fishing, and shrimping and, you know all the things. Culturally. That, helps, them to provide for their families, there is a very close, and. Intimate. Connection. Between the people and the land it's. Not simply, culture. As a way of life its, culture, as survival. And, as, future. Vision. So. That you walk, the land you. Tread the waters, and you, understand. That there, is your life, the. One thing I'm afraid of losing. Is. That. Land that, land. Is the foundation. Of everything. That. Land is is our foundation, I'm worried about losing the, land. So. The questions on winners and losers not just in terms of individuals, but some of, of. The, special spots that make. In. Essence create the fabric, and texture, for the, society, we live in I think. That they could be hardest hit I mean I was down at Penn Center the other day and, it's. It's a a monument. To. An. Incredible. Period. Of time, in our country's history it's. A monument, to the end of one era and the beginning of another, and. Yet places, like that would be very much threatened, so, yeah there is an incredible. Threat. To. Some of the fabric of. Who. We are as a people and, the saying is if you don't learn from the past you're destined to repeat it part, of learning about your past it's actually been a little walk and see it oh yeah this is how this happened and this is why this happened, in a hundred years though, I'm not, sure what its gonna be the fort's gonna be here I have, no doubt in my mind that, I, mean this is a well engineered and well constructed for, it that.
Even If there's five, feet of water and it's an island it will be here. But. While the fort might, be here we're, gonna have to change, the way that we tell a story because. It may be surrounded, by water, there, may be impacts, that visitors can't come out here and that, we might be doing programs, you. Know online, virtual. Reality, programs, whatever the, newest technology, is in a hundred years you know they may not actually be able to stand. Out here as we, are today. If. You follow the news or, social, media at all you. Can't miss the discourse. The. Debate on an international, national and even the local level can be bitterly, divisive. I. Believe. That. What. Has polarized issue and I think it was an unexpected consequence. Was. When at. The time Vice, President, Al Gore, made. The Peace Inconvenient. Truth and I. Think what it did, because. Of his alignment, and affiliation. And because of the time history were politically, it. All of a sudden framed the topic, as a Democratic. Propaganda. Issue I would. Say from a political standpoint, it's. Not so, much a lack of awareness of. Climate change, as a, denial, of, the science you know, we're, in a very Republican area, and. Repeatedly. People, are hearing climate, changes, not happening, it's all a figment of the Democrats, imagination. So, it's very challenging, in this area, for politicians, to stand up and say let's look at the, data and let's. Assume that, perhaps it might happen and if, that happens, what does it mean for our community, this. Has. Become, here, on the news a a, political. Issue. But. I think we can get. Away from the politics, if we just focus on facts and leave, the politics aside. Because. The. Fact that the earth temperature is, rising, and that's not under dispute, we. Don't have to argue about the politics, of who's causing. It is, it my car which needs a tune-up. And I have I'm just viewing a lot of gas at the back or your car or don't, we have enough in electric cars or what not listen. Man-made or not those. Are things that need to be investigated, for sure but. The. Fact of global warming is. Not, a matter of. Political. Affiliation. That's. A matter of scientific observation.
This. Is such a complicated. Apparently. And more, importantly, politicized. Argument. That it, becomes difficult for. People, to get past, the. Ideology. Or the political affiliation. That they feel they're making, when they say climate, change is or isn't causing a certain thing, but the bottom line is that what is undeniable. Here what is undeniable. Is that sea level has risen and, it is rising faster, than it was the. Question of whether or not the. Issues, really on people's radar screen I would. Say increasingly, it is if, you were to talk to Carlos Cabella who represents. A, piece, of Miami what. He tells me is that people are talking about it in ways that they never had before particularly. Given the fact that his sister goes down to the keys and old, timers they are saying we are seeing things we've never seen before I used. To have this debate with a gang of Tom Coburn, who represented. Piece of Oklahoma. And. I, you know I'd say well you know what's global-warming, mean to you I mean, frankly, you're a couple hundred feet of elevation, your. Climate, really and the greatest nothing against Oklahoma, what. Do you care. But if you go to places where people actually retire, which. Happens to be the coastal, regions of this country. We're, reaching something. Of a tipping point given, the number of people that are coming to places like Florida, or the coast of Texas or the coast of South Carolina or, Georgia a, government. And leadership, are, elected, by the people, and if. The people. Are. Educated and. Understand. And are. Smart they. Will elect, people who are. Rational. And look. At the facts and make. Rational. Decisions we. Have to look for leaders who have vision and leaders. Who are willing to take a risk and leaders, who are willing to say I don't care if I lose I've got, to this is important, enough for us to fight, you. Know we have a political, system that is designed to, react, not. To anticipate and. You. Know at times we all wish for I I'd like to see more leadership on this issue that issue but fundamentally, with, the founding fathers set up was a system that reacts to the will of the people and that's, why I said that emerging, consensus, with people that are increasingly, living along the coast is, gonna matter in the debate that's gonna come before us because. One those people, didn't live there a hundred years ago we, had concentrations. In places like New York or Chicago or. Eh but. But not not so much in. You. Know towns, and Hamlet's gathered, along our coastal, areas. And so. I'd say it's. Difficult because change, is hard and there hasn't been the. Level of vote count of voice. Necessary. To propel some of those ideas, whenever. We. Have a, real. Or sometimes perceived, health threat in this country it's. Not only, the. Health, and public health officials who are concerned and the public but. This becomes, then something that. Decision-makers, and our, political, representatives have. To consider as. Well and for. State or. County, officials, to do what. They need to do just require, resources, I guess. It was Churchill, who. Once observed the beauty in the American political system is, it it always does the right thing comma after, it's exhausted, every other possible, remedy and so. There is agree, whether. In our personal lives. Whether. In the body politic. As a reflection, of personal, opinion, we're. In we, we. Hope, for the best and we you, know until something sort of hits us in the face we. At times don't deal with it we, have a way of, procrastinating. Particularly, in big. With big issues because they are hard and we. Can always have policy disputes we're not going to agree on different, policies whether you're on the Republican, side of the aisle or the Democratic, side of the aisle what, we should agree, upon though is, transparency.
Truthfulness. And. Accountability. At the political level you, know everybody talks about transparency, and. It's a really catchy buzzword, you've. Got to really practice it government. Cannot Davila Phi itself, we've. Got to have the folks come in and and get, to know us and then, rebuild, that trust with them from our standpoint I think we have to be willing. To have honest, conversations with. One another, and a, conversation. Is a two-way street. Yes. We can express, our point of view but. It's equally, a maybe even more important, for, us to listen, we've. Got two ears and one mouth and if, we would do more listening and, then, thinking, about the. Points. Of views of other people, I think we can a little, eliminate. A lot, of the political. Controversy. That we seem to be running up against. Big. Issues, require. Leadership. And. We've. Got a lot of chiefs in the American Society. That's, the way our society works, everybody's a chief there are no Indians and, and. Yet. For big issues, to get solved. It. Requires, a degree of unification, a, degree of consensus. That, comes with again, national, leaders, driving. A stake in the ground and saying this I believe to be true north, and then people react, to it they'll react for it and against it but it causes certain lines to form and then you can have a debate about whether that line on it go. We. Don't yet have national. Leadership on this issue it's why I went on the Gibson. Resolution. There I guess only 20 Republicans, that have done so, but. I think that we need to step out and say in. Whatever, form, we hold, this. Is a problem, and ultimately. It will take for, us to get real consensus, in terms of the federal state local it's. Require, a leadership at the presidential level local. Communities, along our coastline, are not standing, still in New. York where, super storm sandy exposed. Much Boehner ability, they. Are investing, nearly 3 billion to, build a wall in lower Manhattan, in, Miami. Beach alone, a nearly. 600. Million dollar mitigation, effort is underway all, along, the eastern seaboard the Gulf and Pacific. Coasts local. Responses, are essential. To confront, a changing climate. You. We. Need to think about the model right. Now we will pay a bunch of money for disaster. Relief. But. Really we don't put that much money into disaster. Preparedness, and, so I think that our beginnings, of conversations. About how, do you reorder public, policy given. The intensity, and the frequency of, storms lately how, do we do more not just to react to them but. To be prepared for them, so. You look at your policies, of development, and redevelopment so. When a even. As stark structure. Is, renovated. You. Know looking, at where, that base for, elevation. Needs to be and, properties. That were built in the wrong place I mean one mitigation, may be that we have to purchase. Some of those properties and we're applying for grants to do that so it's a combination of. Planning. Policy, and building. Codes to. Prepare. For the future and, so ultimately it, comes down to economics which, is one of the things that's mentioned, we, may have to literally raise that, house build, a new foundation, which. Means it costs more so, fortunately. The city has grant funding available, to help persons with that sometimes. It means that person might have to contribute a certain portion of those dollars to, that house renovation. And literally, what, might have started out as a small renovation.
Becomes A substantial, rehab in order, to ensure that we're really making. That how sustainable. For the long term you know, we're gonna have to fortify our edges so, we're, working right now to restore. The, seawall, the low-battery seawall. We replaced the corner, section of it a couple of years ago now, we're working on the low battery and we're, looking at building it two and a half feet higher so. My goal and a small, City we're gonna never get attention so, my, attitude, was let's get out front, and. We're at a point now we're ready to get a grant for, engineering. On what, we call the hot spots we've identified the, hot spots so those vulnerable. Places and the. Nexus to get a grant and go ahead and engineer it so. That when all of a sudden. The Washington. Wakes up, Columbia. Wakes up and, they say we gotta do something I'll, give them my drawings, I'll give them my plans and I'll, say let Beaufort South Carolina be a pilot project in, Beaufort County in particular we, have a sea level rise adaptation, plan that the county developed, with the community, in mind and the, community was very engaged, in that stakeholder, process, they, ranked, steps that you can take to address climate, change and to make your community more resilient such, as prioritizing. Protection. Of high-risk, areas. Involving. The community and education. Investing. In a, transfer of development rights process. So that you can transfer, development, rights from the high-risk areas, to the safe areas, with respect to rising seas to. Invest in setbacks, and beachfront, retreat those, are some tools that beaver county has prescribed, and I think that because. They've been community, driven there's, an ownership over those tools and hopefully an ownership over those outcomes, that, it doesn't need any more argument, and discussion on it needs action, and I, think what the action is is that, you get a wide, variety of disciplines, and opinions. And we sit at the table and we determine, what is important, based, on all these factors environmental, social. Economics. And find, out a real solution that's. Viable that's. Economically. Sound and sustainable. Long term to, preserve and protect special. Places like this the, leadership, role here is to, develop the agenda, to. Identify, the project list and the priorities, to, assigned cost to, add them up and then go raise the money to do it and it's, not that hard. The. Impacts are clear communities, are responding and the conversation. Has focused more than ever on resiliency. Mitigation. And preservation. It's. Going to take a sea change of. Ideas, innovation, and investment, to. Help our towns cities. States. Nation, in the. World to. Meet this monumental. Challenge. More, information available online at, SCE, TV, o RG. /c. -, change. Funding. For this program is, provided by. The. Medical University of South Carolina, public. Information, and community outreach. MUSC. Changing. What's possible. You.