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Open Access Publications from the University of California

When the Water Comes, Where Does the Money Go? An Economic Analysis of Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flooding in Long Beach, CA.


Sea level rise is one of the most obvious manifestations of the trend of climate change, and is an immediate and real threat to lives, livelihoods, transportation, economies and the environment of California. Quantifying and analyzing these potential economic impacts of climate change is an important step towards local government planning for adaptation measures. This research is a parcel-based economic analysis of the potential impacts of sea level rise and coastal flooding in the specified risk zone of Long Beach in Southern California. The analysis indicates that Long Beach, Los Angeles County, and the state of California all face significant, yet varying, economic risks due to sea level rise and coastal flooding in the city of Long Beach. The report concludes with a discussion of and potential explanations for nonlinearity in analyzed results, predicted and modeled impacts of sea level rise with and without 100-year storm events, discussion of when Long Beach can expect to experience impacts that significantly jump from modest to major, and policy implications in the local region and state.

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