326 words • 1~2 min read

#DrownYourTown: Exploring Sea Level Rise through real-time, interactive, GIS modeling

UPDATE: These posts, and the hashtag are getting a lot of attention, so I’d like to reiterate, Caveat Tweetor (twitter beware) — these models are being generated on the fly as request come in. They are not validated and there are many variables that influence sea level rise which are not taken into account. This is a fun way to visualize potential sea level rise but it would be inadvisable to use it for real estate speculation. 

This afternoon, I took to twitter to try out a novel outreach initiative — getting people to think about sea level rise by asking them to drown their home towns. With Google Earth and a “Sea Level” image layer booted up, I was poised for 2 hours of intense map manipulation. The requests came in fast, and ranged from the expected coastal cities with a couple meters of sea level rise all the way to the radical (yes, we flooded Reno, Nevada). After 120 minutes, I had produced models at 52 locations and interacted with more than 400 people. I was also completely exhausted. Here, for your enjoyment, is the complete collection of #DrownYourTown models from the initial 2-hour marathon.


Deep-sea biologist, population/conservation geneticist, backyard farm advocate. The deep sea is Earth's last great wilderness.


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