Virginia’s Sinking Island
According to the US Army Corps of Engineers, Tangier Island has lost sixty-six percent of landmass since 1850 and only sits four feet above sea level due to constant erosion and climate change.
The infographic below shows other factual data of the Island from the US Army Corps of Engineers.
On November 21, 2012, then Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell traveled to Tangier Island to speak to the community concerning the approval to study, design, and construct the seawall to protect the island. The project would cost around $4.2 million but the residents had hope that finally building the seawall will save the Island.
The outlook for the residents of this tiny island is dismal unless the government decides to save its existence and approve the plan. The Army Corps completed the study and published the report in 2016 to find the best way to preserve some of the island’s coastline. A stone jetty was proposed to place in the island’s harbor or navigation channel to help preserve and not disturb the fishing and crabbing that the fisherman depends on to make a living.
The Community of four hundred and fifty residents that are left on Tangier Island is unsure of the future and continue to seek answers from the government on the status of the project that was approved in 2012.
Many of the residents have expressed that they will never leave because their heritage and culture is Tangier Island.
No further update is available at this time on the project’s progress.
The National Coastal Zone Management Office offers a sea level rise view of how fast Tangier Island is sinking.
Social media outlets such as Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr are valuable sources of information, updates, and current discussions on Tangier Island.
Twitter is a source for personal stories and adventures of those who have visited the island in the past. Their experience is a valuable resource to use when planning a trip to Tangier in the near future.
Tangier Island has a Facebook page that gives a list of upcoming events opened to the public and highlights places to visit and stay while on the island.
Tumblr is a social media source that offers open discussions on the island’s future and personal experiences from those who once residents or still have relatives that live there.