The current consensus is that both air and water temperatures will increase. Across the continental US precipitation is falling in more intense events. This trend is especially strong in the northeastern US. Some of these heavy precipitation events will be in the form of hurricanes and winter northeasters. Furthermore, the number and power of severe storms is predicted to increase in the future, even as the overall frequency of storms may decrease. Heavy precipitation events, particularly winter northeasters and hurricanes, often occur in combination with storm surges and wind, which can exacerbate near-shore flooding, especially as sea levels rise. On its own, sea level rise will inundate land and marshes along the shoreline as well. In addition, ocean chemistry is changing, and the main focus of attention has been ocean acidification, which occurs when increased CO2 uptake reduces available carbonate ions.
Why it matters: Climate threats can contribute to the collapse of fisheries and the local economies that depend on them
In Wellfleet Harbor, the main climate related threats are :
Photo Credit : Barbara Brennessel – Wheaton College