Georgia has a climate change problem conservatives will be hard pressed to ignore: the state’s naval bases will increasingly facing flooding due to rising ocean levels.
Rising sea levels and increased flooding are projected to impact Hunter Army Airfield near Savannah, Ga. and the Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay adjacent to Cumberland Island and the Florida-Georgia border. The latter is the home to many of the Navy’s nuclear submarines, and, according to a report recently released by the Union of Concerned Scientists, it could experience flooding:
During the second half of the century, in the absence of preventive measures, Kings Bay and its surrounding areas can expect more frequent and extensive tidal flooding, loss of currently utilized land, and substantial increases in the extent and severity of storm-driven flooding.
While the report for the Hunter Army Airfield base warns of a similar fate. These conditions, of course, won’t be confined just to the naval bases that were studied, as the report notes, “Many surrounding communities will also face growing exposure to rising seas.”
Cumberland Island, near the Kings Bay naval base, is a state treasure, serving as critical habitat for loggerhead turtles and shorebirds like egrets and herons.
Meanwhile, severe drought conditions across parts of Georgia have required the intervention of the federal government in the form of emergency loans to farm- and agriculture-related businesses.
Access WDUN reports:
As drought conditions tighten their grip on the northern half of the state, the federal government is offering some relief in the form of low interest loans to some businesses that have suffered financial loss.
The Georgia Farm Bureau alerted members that the USDA has issued Emergency Designations for 27 counties in north and central Georgia over the past month. Farm and agriculture business in those counties are eligible for low interest emergency loans to help them cover some of the losses they have and will sustain.
Conservatives policymakers can’t continue denying the root cause of climate change — human activity substantially increasing CO2 and other greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere — if they want to protect coastal military installations and agri-businesses from rising sea levels and increasingly severe weather patterns. Military and agri-business interests, you know, seem like their bread and butter.
Conservatives may want to ignore this issue because it disproportionately impacts the global south and other communities they don’t ever seem to care about, but climate change will have devastating impacts on the communities and resources they do care about.
Climate change affects us all, and as the state with the 12th highest carbon dioxide emissions, we’ve a got a lot of work ahead of us.