New York City Gradually Sinking Under Weight of Skyscrapers and Rising Sea Levels

One of the most popular Cities in the United States, New York City (NYC), popularly known as the ‘Big Apple’, is said to be sinking underwater. Reports state that the cause of this is partly due to the city’s infrastructure and the weight of all its massive skyscrapers, but also partly because of natural disasters and rising sea levels.

According to a study which was published in the Earth’s Future journal, with a population of over eight million people, NYC has to contend with different levels of danger caused by “inundation”. The study shows that, “The combination of tectonic and anthropogenic subsidence, sea level rise, and increasing hurricane intensity imply an accelerating problem along coastal and riverfront areas.”

It was said that while these changes are not significant enough for widespread panic presently, it is good to keep the knowledge in mind when considering new construction projects. As the city sinks at an approximated rate of 1-2mm each year, the risk of flooding rises.

Researchers also mentioned that as global warming continues and glaciers around the world melt, causing a rise in sea levels, the sinking city is affected and has seen a rise in the water surrounding NYC that has risen to about 22cm since 1950.

It was calculated that the total weight of NYC, including the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building, is 1.68tn lbs, or the same as 140 million elephants.

According to Tom Parsons, a geophysicist at the US Geological Survey, “The softer the soil, the more compression there is from the buildings. It wasn’t a mistake to build such large buildings in New York but we’ve just got to keep in mind every time you build something there you push down the ground a little bit more.”

Although the city is not foretold to sink underwater overnight, caution is advised to citizens to be careful of the high risk of flooding and warned about the effects of highrises during this perilous time. 

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