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Southern California Climate Change: King Tides Threaten Homes on Malibu’s Coastline

Posted by admin on February 18, 2011
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In our 12 years of living in Malibu, we have come to learn both the beauty and power of the ocean. For every day of walking at sunset at extreme low tide, we have also learned to respect the power and fury of a stormy ocean and extreme high tides.

In Tuesday’s Los Angeles Times, I learned of a term I had never heard of before: “king tides.” Apparently this is a twice a year occurrence – resulting from the gravitational forces of the sun, Earth and a full moon aligning.

The fact that this arrives in tandem with a powerful storm makes this an especially dangerous week and many coastal cities are preparing for the worst. It seems that we in Malibu have escaped the worst of these “king tides.”

But the last year has seen many changes to the Malibu Coast. Most significantly these changes are man-made. There is great dissention in the community as several coastal communities have brought in tons of rocks and sandbags to protect their homes.

The science, while compelling, is not 100 percent convincing and many in Malibu feel this just an opportunistic land grab. It’s hard to say. The small window that we have lived in Malibu certainly cannot represent the natural changes that have occurred over the eons that our coast has existed. But in the small window that we have lived here we have seen tremendous changes.

For those of you that live in Malibu, have you noticed a lot of changes over the years?  Do you believe the “King Tides” are a real threat or just a bunch of media hype?  Let us know.

Photo courtesy of caccamo’s Flickr Photostream

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