But there was no storm to be found. In fact, many places enjoyed pleasant weather and sunshine. Yet coastal flood advisories plastered the coast, forcing road closures and flooding properties.
The culprit? King tides. A name informally attached to extra-high tides spurred by astronomical alignments, king tides often reach their peak in the fall. Decades ago, their impact was minimal. But added to the background of climate-driven sea-level rise, nowadays they are routinely problematic.
“I think of this like a stacking of phenomena,” said William Sweet, an oceanographer with NOAA specializing in sea level rise and flooding issues. “We didn’t flood 30 or 40 years ago, but since then … sea levels have been a half-foot to a foot higher.”
The rise in water has left thousands of homes and businesses vulnerable to sunny-day flooding, disrupting daily life and undermining property values in some areas.
As greenhouse gases resulting from