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Senate holds Miami Beach hearing on climate change

Tuesday - 4/22/2014, 2:30pm  ET

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson brought a Senate hearing on climate change to South Florida, a region already seeing the effects of rising sea levels.

The Florida Democrat said he wanted to hold Tuesday's hearing in Miami Beach because the city is "ground zero" for the damaging effects of climate change. A panel of local elected officials and scientists testified about projections for future sea levels and plans to cope with higher tides and rising seas.

According to a regional plan to adapt to climate change, the waters off South Florida could rise up to 2 feet by 2060. Miami Beach already suffers street flooding from seasonal high tides. Upgrades to the city's storm water system to improve drainage and reduce that flooding are expected to cost up to $400 million.


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