Sea Level Rise Scenarios for the Humboldt Bay Area

Publication Date



In 2015, Northern Hydrology Associates published "Humboldt Bay Sea Level Rise, Hydrodynamic Modeling, and Inundation Vulnerability Mapping," which includes GIS files mapping various sea level rise scenarios. Featured are scenarios with 1 and 2 meters of sea level rise with 100-year flood events.

A 100-year flood historically has a 1% probability of occurring in any given year but can occur in shorter intervals (for example, the floods of 1955 and 1964). The 100-year flood is a concept used for insurance and land use planning purposes and does not take sea level rise or associated rising groundwater into account. These are floods that do a lot of damage, but nuisance flooding from less extreme events will cause damage, temporary road closures, etc. more frequently as sea level rises.

The report and SLR inundation scenarios in Google Earth KMZ files and ArcGIS shapefiles for various scenarios are available on the Coastal Ecosystems Institute website. In 2018, two updates were published:

  • Sea Level Rise in the Humboldt Bay Region, Update 1 (March 2018)
  • Sea Level Rise in the Humboldt Bay Region, Update 2 (December 2018)