I kid you not.
There’s two main ways to respond to rising sea levels, defend or retreat. Defence means bigger sea walls, tidal barriers, big, expensive works. Retreat means letting nature take her course, if a coastal area is going to be flooded, then let it. The wetland will provide their own protection for towns and cities further inland.
So instead, the UK Institute of Civil Engineers and the UK architect’s think-tank have got together to come up with a third option – retreat, defend, or ATTACK! If the ocean wants to play it rough, then bring it on! We’ll see you outside, bitch!
*Ahem* Seriously, the plan is to build out from cities into the ocean, starting half-way sensibly with land reclamation and piers, and then rapidly getting into floating buildings, houseboats, and re-using oil rigs for office space.
It might look like this:
I can’t decide if this is an awesome idea, or insane, King Canute-style hubris. It costs stupidly huge amounts to stop an oil rig from rusting away in salt water, which you can bear if it’s producing a million dollars worth of oil each day. Plonk a university on top of that oil rig and the maintenance cost alone starts to look unbearable. One of the report’s authors admitted that the proposal was uncosted.
Still, I like the idea of civil engineers being aggressively uncivil.