Will Santa Monica's iconic beaches be underwater in 30 years? Climate Science Alliance partner, USC Sea Grant collaborated with the City of Santa Monica and USGS to develop new virtual reality visualizations that reveal how sea level rise and big storms will affect the Santa Monica shoreline - flooding the beach and infrastructure by the end of the century. The incredible virtual reality simulation can be viewed online here. You can also visit the Owl installation on the Santa Monica Pier to view the simulation and see how the Owl's 180-degree rotating audio-visual platform offers a glimpse into the future!
In addition to their innovative sea level rise simulation, USC Sea Grant is also getting creative with their data collection. They launched the Urban Tides Community Science Initiative, which is a community based science effort to document current tidal lines, beach erosion, and coastal flooding. On November 14th, they kicked off this season of data collection in coordination with a USGS/NASA/JPL flight collecting radar imagery over the Southern California coastline. In conjunction with their radar imagery flight, they had volunteers come out to the beach to take photos of king tides during the radar flight. This is citizen science in action! These images will provide invaluable on-the-ground comparisons with the radar imagery and be used to help calibrate sea level rise models. USGS has selected priority locations for photos from Santa Barbara to the Tijuana estuary.
The Climate Science Alliance is excited by USC Sea Grant's innovative and engaging approach to climate change and sea level rise.