NASA Map Reveals How Fast New Orleans Is Sinking

Posted: May 19 2016, 8:51am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News


NASA Map Reveals How Fast New Orleans is Sinking
Subsidence in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, from June 2009 to July 2012, as seen by NASA's UAVSAR instrument. The measured displacements are a combination of movement of the ground and of individual structures. The inset at lower right shows the parish location within Greater New Orleans. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech, Esri
  • Novel NASA Maps reveal that New Orleans is getting Submerged

The novel NASA maps that have been charted tend to reveal that the city of New Orleans is getting submerged at a breakneck speed that is alarming to say the least.

It is a city that already lies below the sea level. Couple that with the fact that it is rapidly sinking and you have a recipe for disaster. NASA has taken to mapmaking in order to chart the sinking city. Something has been done to stop this trend in its tracks.

NASA’s radar information was employed between 2009 and 2012 to aid this effort. The results were published in a journal. Parts of New Orleans were going under at a rate of 2 inches on an annual basis. 

Although this numerical figure doesn’t seem to be much yet it has a cumulative effect over the years. As sea levels rise, New Orleans and its people face dire straits ahead.

The scenario is indeed frightening. Some of the areas that are most at risk include the Norco’s industrial region, Michoud, Metairie and the Upper and Lower 9th Ward.

The main reasons for the issue at hand were groundwater pumping and dewatering. Over a period of time, such activities have led to parts of the city sinking beneath the danger zone. 

Each 10 years or so, the land goes 2 feet beneath sea level. The city’s administration will have to take precautionary measures on a consistent basis if it is to tackle this big problem. The waterways are causing chaos and anarchy on a scale that will overwhelm all the inhabitants of New Orleans soon if care is not taken. The data provided by the maps may be utilized for dealing with subsidence. The coastal integrity and durability of New Orleans is of paramount importance.   

Models of flooding and the general response to calamities will have to be consolidated. The improvement of public safety and security are the watchwords for now.

New Orleans is not the only city in the world that is facing such hazards. California and parts of the Yellow River in China are up against the same conundrum. These areas are being submerged at a rate of 3 feet every 4 years.

The process is a hard one to solve. Personal and individual efforts can only go so far before meeting with barriers imposed by Mother Nature. Large scale initiatives by the state will have to be taken if this scourge of rising sea levels is to be tackled in a thorough manner.

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
Sumayah Aamir (Google+) has deep experience in analyzing the latest trends.




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