Friday, March 03, 2023

Rising Sea Stripes

NPR has been investigating how rising sea levels are causing coastal erosion in the city of Saint-Louis, Senegal. 75% of Senegal's coastline is at risk of coastal erosion and, in recent years, some neighborhoods of Saint-Louis have already experienced devastating floods. In Disappearing Saint-Louis NPR has used a series of maps to show how Saint-Louis is located precariously between the Atlantic Ocean and the Senegal River, and is dangerously exposed to rising seas and coastal erosion.  

One map in the NPR article uses colored lines to show the median position of the shoreline for every year since 2000. This map provides a fantastic visualization of how coastal erosion is increasingly encroaching on the city. The colored lines, overlaid on top of an aerial view of the Saint-Louis shoreline, clearly show how the shoreline is rapidly eroding. The darker lines show the median position of the shoreline in the earliest years and the lighter lines represent the sea's position in more recent years. The obvious progression of the median position of the shoreline up the beach over time provides a stark visualization of the precarious position that the residents of Saint-Louis now find themselves in.

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