Can Cities Adjust to a Retreating Coastline?

Last June, in rolling out an ambitious $20-billion plan to gird New York City against the impacts of rising seas and storm surges in a warming climate, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg gave a classic “no retreat” speech

, including this line:

[A]s New Yorkers, we cannot and will not abandon our waterfront. It’s one of our greatest assets. We must protect it, not retreat from it.

Of course, who could ever imagine a politician standing on a coastline proclaiming, “We will retreat!”

But somehow, that’s what has to be done. Finding a way to have a realistic discussion of where to hold firm and where to pull back, where to gird and where to let nature dominate, has to happen to limit costs and other regrets in thousands of coastal cities and smaller communities around the world.

Read full text at The New York Times