Austin, St. Louis ... the Great Wall of China?

Coastal cities get all the love when it comes to apocalyptic images of sea level rise. But last Wednesday, marine biologist Andrew David Thaler launched the #DrownYourTown hashtag, inviting Twitter users to request sea level rise visualizations for their hometown. Suddenly, any city could star in its own The Day After Tomorrow.

Using Google Earth and GIS modeling, Thayer "drowned" over 50 locations in the initial 2-hour mapping marathon. Check out the ridiculous amount of sea level rise it will take to drown these landlocked cities. (Keep in mind these are visualizations of potential sea level rise, not guaranteed to be accurate).

Plenty of ominous wishes were cast on international cities as well.  

Not even the old and new world wonders could escape the wrath of #DrownYourTown.

Thaler also shared a step-by-step guide to creating these images, which can be made in minutes. He hopes others will explore sea level rise on their own, and some already have. 

When asked if this exercise trivializes sea level rise, Thaler says “trivial” can be a good thing if it means the issue will be deeply ingrained in our minds. 

“I want sea level rise to be something people are thinking about everyday,” says Thaler over the phone.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. a photo of a tiny house in Oregon
    Design

    How Amazon Could Transform the Tiny House Movement

    Could the e-commerce giant help turn small-home living from a niche fad into a national housing solution?

  2. The downtown St. Louis skyline.
    Perspective

    Downtown St. Louis Is Rising; Black St. Louis Is Being Razed

    Square co-founder Jack Dorsey is expanding the company’s presence in St. Louis and demolishing vacant buildings on the city’s north side.

  3. Environment

    What U.S. Cities Facing Climate Disaster Risks Are Least Prepared?

    New studies find cities most vulnerable to climate change disasters—heat waves, flooding, rising seas, drought—are the least prepared.

  4. Warren Logan
    Transportation

    A City Planner Makes a Case for Rethinking Public Consultation

    Warren Logan, a Bay Area transportation planner, has new ideas about how to truly engage diverse communities in city planning. Hint: It starts with listening.

  5. a photo of Housing Secretary Ben Carson in Baltimore in July.
    Equity

    How HUD Could Dismantle a Pillar of Civil Rights Law

    The Department of Housing and Urban Development plans to revise the “disparate impact” rule, which could fundamentally reshape federal fair housing enforcement.  

×