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Sea-Level Rise Hazard Maps

Interactive Hazard Maps

The following maps provide projections of areas that could be affected by sea level rise at 0.8 feet of sea-level rise (± 2030), 2.5 feet of sea-level rise (± 2060), and 6.6 feet of sea-level rise (± 2100) without any action or intervention as analyzed in the Draft Sea-Level Rise Vulnerability Assessment. The 2018 State of California Sea-Level Rise Guidance recommends using these precautionary and more risk-adverse scenarios when planning for structures, infrastructure, and other development that is not easily moved. Due to the uncertainty regarding when particular amounts of sea-level rise will occur, the Draft Adaptation Plan provides a framework for planning based on amounts of sea-level rise, rather than the year when those amounts of sea-level rise might occur. For more information on sea-level rise projections click here.

The hazard areas shown on the maps below are ONLY those that could be impacted or intensified by sea level rise and are limited to bluff and beach erosion, non-storm tidal inundation, storm waves, and storm flooding. There may be other impacts of sea level rise, such as seawater intrusion, which are not mapped below. Additionally, other hazards unrelated to sea level rise exist in the City which are not shown on the maps below. Additional information on other existing hazards in the City can be found here.

FEMA Flood Maps, which can be viewed here, show existing flood hazard areas in the City from heavy rainfall and high ocean levels during extreme storms. The maps below only show those areas where flooding during extreme storms will be intensified due to sea-level rise and do not show all of the areas of the City that currently flood during extreme rainfall events.

The following maps display hazard types based on the hierarchy of hazard types and impact classes as further described in the Draft Sea-Level Rise Vulnerability Assessment. Areas may be subject to multiple hazard types, but only the most permanent hazard type for a particular area is displayed on these maps. To view the full extent and evolution over time (i.e. existing, 2060 and 2100) of individual hazard types refer to figures provided in Appendix E of the Draft Sea-Level Rise Vulnerability Assessment.

0.8 Ft. of Sea-Level Rise (± 2030) Hazard Areas

Source: USGS, ESA

2.5 Ft. of Sea-Level Rise (± 2060) Hazard Areas

Source: USGS, ESA

6.6 Ft. of Sea-Level Rise (± 2100) Hazard Areas

Source: USGS, ESA

Terms Used on Maps

Bluff Erosion

Over time, erosion causes the edge of coastal bluffs to move inland as material falls or collapses onto the beach, ocean, or bluff face below. For the purposes of the Sea-Level Rise Adaptation Plan, bluff erosion is considered to be a permanent impact.

Shoreline Erosion

Over time, sandy beaches and dunes experience temporary erosion, with sand moving seasonally to and away from the beach, and permanent erosion, with sand moving away from the beach without returning. For the purposes of the Sea Level Rise Adaptation Plan, "shoreline erosion" refers to the permanent loss of sandy beaches, dunes, and the low-lying backshore that occurs with changing sea level or sand supply. In the Adaptation Plan shoreline erosion is considered to be a permanent impact.

Storm Flooding

When storms strike the Santa Barbara coast, they generally bring high water levels and waves. For the purposes of the Sea-Level Rise Adaptation Plan, "storm flooding" refers to the combination of the high water levels that come with a storm, including some of the effects of waves. The coastal storm used to define the hazard zone is estimated to have a 1% chance of occurring each year (i.e., a "100-year storm"). In the Adaptation Plan, storm flooding is considered to be a temporary impact.

Storm Waves

Storm waves refer to the exposure of the Santa Barbara shore to large waves generated by local and distant storms. These waves arrive at the Santa Barbara coast from a range of directions, and influence the coastal water levels and also directly induce flooding, erosion, and wave damage hazards, described generally as a wave hazard zone landward of the high tide line. For the purposes of the Adaptation Plan, storm waves are considered a temporary hazard.

Tidal Inundation

Tidal inundation refers to areas that are below the typical high tide elevation under non-storm conditions. For the purposes of the Adaptation Plan, tidal inundation is considered to be a permanent impact.

Last Updated: Mar 5, 2020
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