North Carolina officials watching an ever-encroaching ocean on the state's delicate coastline are planning for a wetter future.
The Charlotte Observer reported Sunday that a North Carolina science panel is predicting the sea level will rise by 1 meter by 2100.
That means about 2,000 square miles of coastline that is a meter or less above water is at risk. On that land is some of the state's most expensive real estate that economists say is worth a total of almost $7 billion.
Some warn that higher sea levels will make coastal storms more devastating.
Ocean encroachment has already had a visible effect the coast when the iconic Cape Hatteras Lighthouse was moved away from the Atlantic in 1999 because of an 8-inch rise in sea levels.