What will Mississippi look like if glaciers melt? Here’s your answer

Toni Koraza

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Mississippi is known for its hospitable Southern charm. People come here looking to relax, eat some down-home cooking, and spend the day at the beach. Unfortunately, this may not be the case much longer if some of the biggest glaciers melt.

Mississippi is one of many coastal states at risk of flooding if things continue like they are. Historical landmarks like the Vicksburg National Military Park and the Winterville Site could be permanently lost. Cities like Biloxi, Gulfport, and Hattiesburg may be completely underwater.

Sea levels are rising by half of an inch annually, and that’s likely to climb higher. The more sea levels increase, the more the threat to Mississippi increases.

The rising sea level and upcoming floods

Data analysis of past trends shows that there will be floods over 4 feet tall between now and 2050. With the Mississippi River to the west and the Gulf of Mexico to the south, the people of Mississippi are no strangers to flooding, but it’s worse than any other time in the last 500 years.

Thwaites Glacier is the widest glacier on Earth and strongly impacts how high the seas are. If it were to melt completely, global sea levels would increase by 25 inches. That would put at least three coastal counties underwater.

Mississippi will change in our lifetime

It would be easy to pretend that this is tomorrow’s problem, but it’s not. The people that live in Mississippi now have a 92% chance of experiencing a severe flood that will force them out of their homes in the next decade.

This can be overwhelming to consider, but it’s not hopeless yet. We can do things as a community to help prevent these changes and become more resilient. The Gulf of Mexico Climate and Resilience Community has resources available, so you can start helping today.

Are you worried about the melting glaciers and rising sea levels?

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