The Water Will Cover Florida…and a Nuclear Power Plant.

Miami, Florida is just a few feet above sea level, and within a few decades, it will be level with the sea.

The water won’t stop there.

It will rise another few feet, and likely another few feet after that, for a total of at least 9 feet above its current level, before this century ends.

A novel in my Nae-Née series, Book 3 of 3, New World Order Underwater, spends a significant portion of its plot in Miami, Florida, after sea level has risen.

Infrastructure changes have been made, but most of Miami is underwater in it, and the scene is reminiscent of the opening credits of the Starz series Magic City. That is where the similarity ends. The woman swimming is having a different experience, which makes sense in disaster ecotourism.

A year after I published my story, a journalist named Jeff Goodell published a book entitled The Water Will Come: Rising Seas, Sinking Cities, and the Remaking of the Civilized World.

He too spends a significant portion of his book discussing Miami, Florida, and the dangers it faces in the coming decades.

Here are both books:

So, both I and Mr. Goodell have been alert to these dangers, noticing and focusing on the situation in Miami in our respective books, and with horror.

I responded to the danger posed by the existence of a nuclear power plant just south of Miami, in Homestead, Florida, by having had it shut down, dismantled, and its radioactive contents relocated far inland, disassembled and not to be reassembled before the water could inundate it. There are, after all, plenty of other problems to describe in horrific detail in my novel.

There was no need – nor was there any desire on my part – to write the game-over version of Miami underwater, one in which the Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Station has melted down in the Atlantic Ocean’s version of Chernobyl.

I figured I would leave that horror show for a journalist to describe, and sure enough, a year later, one did.

Courtesy of Florida Light & Power.

State Senator Says FPL Isn’t Preparing Miami’s Nuclear Plant for Sea-Level Rise

Jeff Goodell has detailed the facts in vivid detail, having visited local politicians and researched the situation to the nth degree.

Not surprisingly, he was not admitted to the facility for a tour, but there is no need when enough information is a matter of public record.

The reactors – both of them – are 20 feet above sea level.

That sounds great, doesn’t it?! Sea level isn’t going that high in climate model predictions.

But wait, there’s more: there is an emergency cooling generator 15 feet above sea level. Its job is to cool the reactors.

We all know what happened when those things failed at the Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Fukushima, Japan: meltdown.

Now no human can get near the place to shut down the lethal mess, it’s leaking into the Pacific Ocean, toxifying fisheries, and it is doubtful that any robot yet invented could function long enough to do anything about it, either.

Back to Turkey Point: the cooling generator is housed in an open-louvered container, 15 feet above sea level.

So what? Sea level is projected to rise at most 9 feet, not even high enough to get at that, you might say.

That’s not the whole story.

Never mind the fact that humans will have to abandon most of Florida, as they have in my dystopian novels with poorly planned chaos in their hasty departures.

Never mind the mixing of saltwater with freshwater as the ocean inundates Florida.

Never mind the cholera-infested waters from raw sewage mixing with it all that will add to the misery.

No, that’s not all.

Don’t forget what will get to that nuclear power plant: hurricanes.

All we need is for a super-storm of a hurricane – a Category 5 would suffice – and storm surges will rise over the place by 28 feet.

Super-storms are no longer a theory. They are a regular occurrence, and they are happening with far greater frequency than ever.

The Atlantic’s version of Chernobyl is coming if our short-sighted species doesn’t dismantle and relocate this entire facility and soon.

If that louvered box is breached, the cooling generator will fail, and the nuclear reactors will melt down.

It won’t be pretty.

Here is how the place looks from above, close up, on Google Maps:

Pulling back from it a bit, we can see the general layout of the facility, the coast, and the fact that no human settlements are adjacent to it.

Pull back a bit more, however, and human settlements are within walking distance. Look at the neighborhoods and pools nearby.

And, rising even farther overhead, showing the Turkey Point Nuclear Power Station toward the bottom of the image, we can see Miami.

Think about that just before you try to go to sleep, and you won’t fall asleep quickly, nor will you rest easy once you do.

I found a blog post that was made shortly after the tsunami that destroyed the nuclear power plant in Fukushima hit.

It extrapolated the effects of a similar disaster on Miami, in a very short entry, with this image:

EYE ON MIAMI – Nukes: In Japan and Turkey Point. By Geniusofdespair

It focuses on Miami, the water that laps at its sidewalks, the keys and shoals just off of its coast, and reminds us of all of the residents who would be affected by a meltdown.

Actually, we don’t have to wait for the next natural disaster to poison the waters around that nuclear power plant.

It’s doing that now. A system of cooling canals, if you can imagine the idiocy of implementing such a plan, winds through the marshes around it.

It goes into Biscayne Bay, and saltwater leaks into drinking water.

South Florida is not a safe place to live, let alone a healthy one.

Radioactive baths and showers, cooking water, drinking water – all are part of life in Homestead and the Miami area.

Local citizens – not wealthy people – have organized to protest the inaction and mismanagement – a familiar story – and gotten nowhere.

Neither Florida Light & Power nor the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission acknowledge the danger.

Florida Light & Power won’t allow tours, and insists that there is no danger, engaging in the classic speech of an entity in a state of denial.

Photo by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Turkey Point Nuclear Plant Is Pumping Polluted Water Into Biscayne Bay

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission considers earthquakes and storms, but not rising sea levels or super-storms.

Meanwhile, as Goodell reports in his book, Miami area real estate agents get defense and then hysterical when told of the coming danger of rising sea levels, crying that it’s “not fair!”

That’s amusing in a rather hideous way, because life isn’t fair.

What these sinking land merchants are really howling about is the loss of a lucrative income and the beachfront, luxurious lifestyle that they currently enjoy and intended to continue in.

We live in a time of idiocy, reckless endangerment, and outright insanity.

I know what I want done about this: I want the place taken apart by nuclear experts and its components taken far inland, then stored in a cool and secure facility until nuclear fusion is perfected, so that the danger posed by this fissionable material will be averted.

I want us to stay in a reasonably safe holding pattern until science fiction has had time to become science fact.

I’ve written it into my novel.

But I am under no delusions as to what actually will happen.

The wealthy humans of this planet will not wake up and insist upon a change in time to stop a nuclear catastrophe.

They will relocate their homes in time to save themselves, and only themselves.

As for the rest of the world, I have little hope for it.

I did try to warn people by writing my story, and Jeff Goodell has tried also.

However, I have a sinking feeling – pun intended – that most people don’t want to read unless they are being entertained.

That is why I tried presenting my research as dystopian science fiction.

But even that involves thinking and facing inconvenient realities.

We humans are entirely too focused on our own convenience to deserve a healthy ecosystem.

The few of us who are paying attention may deserve it, but making the biggest fuss we can about it likely won’t preserve it.

That won’t stop us from pushing for it anyway.

3 comments to The Water Will Cover Florida…and a Nuclear Power Plant.

  • Why are you so concerned about a nuclear plant that can be shut down any time we choose, rather than Miami…the entire Gulf Coast, the entire Atlantic Coast…?”

    As for the need for nuclear power expansion, we were on track to thwart much sea rise long ago, until naive anti-nukes & crass combustion folks got to our politics:

    Dr. A. Cannara
    650 400 3071

    • Dear Dr. Cannara:

      I am concerned about the entire Gulf Coast and Atlantic Coast.

      This blog post was about one item.

      I read the entire book by Jeff Goodell, not just the parts about Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Station.

      Then I wrote about one thing. This is a blog, not a venue that deals with every possibility in one short post.

      People who disagree about the risks and benefits of nuclear power are not naive.

      Thank you for your comment.

  • Peter Martin

    A 6 meter rise (19.5 feet) is highly likely with the disappearance of just the Greenland icecap, never mind the accelerated loss of the west Antarctic glaciers. I have written my first book, “TP1000: The Bishops” highlighting this and hope to continue the story with a series of books covering the next 500 years as seen through the eyes of members of the Bishop family over this period. Spoiler – West Antarctic ice sheet disappears and results in 20 meter (65 feet) sea level rise.

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