Map shows areas of Seattle affected by rise in sea level

Updated:

SEATTLE —

Parts of Seattle could be under water in a matter of years, city officials warned as they outlined their plan Monday to respond to climate change.

 

Seattle Public Utilities released a projection of sea levels in 2050.

 

The map shows areas in the city, like spots in West Seattle, Harbor Island, Interbay and Golden Gardens, that could be under water because of a rise in sea levels of up to 44 inches caused by flooding from  tides or storm surges.

 

"If you're going to have flooding -- if you're going to be underwater -- you've got to plan for your facilities," said Jean Godden of the Seattle City Council. "You don't want to put your combined sewer overflow tank in a place that will be flooded. That's the sort of thing we have to make that assessment each time we do a project now."

 

Godden was joined by other council members who are pushing a plan to reduce greenhouse gasses and deal with rising sea levels.

 

Councilman Mike O'Brien addressed those who don't believe in climate change.

 

"Even for those folks who continue to deny what we're seeing on the ground, the actions we're talking about are not just good for our climate, they're good for our economy. It positions Seattle well," O'Brien said.

 

The Green Ribbon Commission released its recommendations to the city, including putting a tax on carbon.

 

"The immediate, quick action would be as simple as the renewing the Bridging the Gap transportation levy," said Doris Koo of the Green Ribbon Commission.

 

Council members want taxpayers to weigh in.

 

Godden and others hope to pass a new Climate Action Plan by Earth Day, April 22.

 

Sea level rise map