Salt water from sea level rise threatens America's earliest farms

Signal of change / Salt water from sea level rise threatens America's earliest farms

By Ella-Louise Micallef / 04 Mar 2018

The lower eastern shore of Maryland has been home to some of America’s oldest farms, however the area is now under threat. Rising sea-levels near Chesapeake Bay, combined with the subsiding ground, has resulted in salt water making its way into the soil of these historic farms. One farmer has already had to abandon his 30 acre plot, as he is no longer able to grow corn on it. “The soil salt content is six to seven parts per thousand. Corn, typically, won’t grow once salt is more than 0.8 parts per thousand,” says Keryn Gedan, a wetland ecologist.

So what?

Currently the full extent of the Chesapeake Bay area’s salt problem is unknown, as state and federal agencies have just begun investigating the issue.  However, with limited ability to predict where the salt will move, it makes it near impossible to attempt to adapt and preserve the remaining farmland.  

Sources

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/03/maryland-salt-farms/554663/

What might the implications of this be? What related signals of change have you seen?

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