Florida is flat, and sea levels across the state and around the world are rising. What that means for Florida, and the Sarasota-Manatee region in particular, is the focus of a March 27 special New Topics New College lecture: “Sea Level Rise in Florida: Is It Time to Start Building the Ark?
The panelists are two world-renowned climate scientists and participants in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore.
Dr. Pier Vellinga and Dr. Henry Pollack will discuss the latest science and predictions for sea level rise, what factors drive the change and how Florida communities can adapt and reduce the risks to both natural features and man-made construction.
Drs. Vellinga and Pollack will share their experience from practices tested in countries such as the Netherlands, Australia and Vietnam, and cities including Venice, London and communities along the coasts of the United States.
Dr. Vellinga is professor of climate change at Wageningen University and Vrije Universiteit in the Netherlands. He previously specialized in coastal engineering, where he contributed to the Deltaplan of the Netherlands, the elaborate system of dams, dikes, levees and barriers that protects the country.
Dr. Pollack is professor of geophysics (emeritus) at University of Michigan. He is the author of “A World Without Ice” (2010) and “Uncertain Science… Uncertain World” (2010) and has traveled to Antarctica several times for research.
Vellinga was one of the founders of the IPCC and has been a lead author of several chapters of the group’s reports, while Pollack has been a contributing author to its assessment reports.
The lecture will be at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, in the Mildred Sainer Pavilion on the Caples Campus of New College, 5313 Bay Shore Road (just south of the Ringling Museum). Tickets are $15 and can be reserved online at donate.ncf.edu/events or by calling 487-4888.