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The 1-2-3s Of Boston's Rising Sea Level

A police car navigates through floodwaters on Central St. to reach Atlantic Ave. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
A police car navigates through floodwaters on Central St. to reach Atlantic Ave. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

Boston faces climate change threats from both rising seas and flooding during big rainstorms. These problems are complicated, and they'll have a profound effect on residents and much of the regional economy.

We cover a lot of this information in our series "Boston Under Water," but to help you wrap your head around the issues, we're breaking things down by the numbers.

(Whether or not these facts blow your mind like they did ours, they'll impress friends at your next dinner party!)


A man walks through water flooding over Long Wharf in Boston. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
A man walks through water flooding over Long Wharf in Boston. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
A pickup truck heads through flood water that has crashed over the seawall in Revere during a Nor’easter. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
A pickup truck heads through flood water that has crashed over the seawall in Revere during a Nor’easter. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
An inbound MBTA Blue Line train on it's way to Wood Island Station in East Boston. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
An inbound MBTA Blue Line train on it's way to Wood Island Station in East Boston. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Stormwater drains into this creek and then to the Neponset River at this pipe outfall in Dorchester. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Stormwater drains into this creek and then to the Neponset River at this pipe outfall in Dorchester. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

*Technically it's 5.15 inches, but we like nice, round numbers. And besides, we're trying to stick to a theme here!

A car drives through flood water by the Chart House on Boston's Long Wharf during a November king tide. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
A car drives through flood water by the Chart House on Boston's Long Wharf during a November king tide. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
Sea water floods past the telescopes at the end of Long Wharf. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
Sea water floods past the telescopes at the end of Long Wharf. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
Ducks wading in a puddle at the foot of the statue of John Singleton in Copley Sq. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Ducks wading in a puddle at the foot of the statue of John Singleton in Copley Sq. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
The fence around a "Building A Better Boston" project gets its feet wet as high tide during the snow storm floods across Long Wharf. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
The fence around a "Building A Better Boston" project gets its feet wet as high tide during the snow storm floods across Long Wharf. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
A plaque installed into the sidewalk on Hallet Street warns anything that goes into the drain goes to Boston Harbor. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
A plaque installed into the sidewalk on Hallet Street warns anything that goes into the drain goes to Boston Harbor. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)
Buildings near Rowes Wharf are seen from the Seaport District in Boston. (Hadley Green for WBUR)
Buildings near Rowes Wharf are seen from the Seaport District in Boston. (Hadley Green for WBUR)

An MWRA wet weather sewage discharge outfall warning on the Charles River by the outlet of Boston's Muddy River. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
An MWRA wet weather sewage discharge outfall warning on the Charles River by the outlet of Boston's Muddy River. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

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