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Engineers Focus On Big Delta Threats

Publication Date: 3/11/2009
Author: Tom Sawyer and Angelle Bergeron
Format: HTML

At conferences and on Websites, at research centers and out on windswept coasts around the world, increasing numbers of engineers, scientists, planners and policymakers are gathering to share ideas and lessons learned about a growing threat to one of the linchpins of civilization: the delta regions of the world. Those fragile landforms, built patiently over millennia by the sediment deposited at the mouths of the world’s mightiest rivers, are home to great ports and commercial centers of the global economy. They are, by definition, low and coastal; they also are on the front line to suffer hard consequences from climate change, particularly from the sea-level rise widely expected to accompany projected global warming. Experts can debate the probability and degree, but nations depending on the deltas cannot afford to wait for nature’s demonstration.

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