Facebook, Google campuses at risk of imminent floods
Weather forecasts indicate risk of rising sea levels and imminent floods along the San Francisco Bay area where Facebook and Google headquarters are located.
The Silicon Valley city is on the verge of being submerged with the likelihood of sea level rising to six feet in the next few decades.
A group of scientists have indicated that the rapid cuts in greenhouse gas emissions may not be enough to resist the global warming or check the rising sea levels, given the constant disintegration of Antartic ice sheets and melting of icebergs.
Facebook's new campus runs the highest risk among the bunch of companies lined up along the shoreline of San Francisco Bay. The 430,000 sq ft complex houses a nine-acre garden rooftop with its offices designed to accommodate 2,800 staff, reports The Guardian.
“Facebook is very vulnerable,” said Lindy Lowe, a senior planner at California’s Bay Conservation and Development Commission.
Elaborating on the vulnerability of Facebook's new campus to the rising sea levels along the shoreline, Lowe explained:
They built on a very low site – I don’t know why they chose to build there. Facebook thinks they can pay enough to protect themselves. The temporary flooding within the campus can probably be addressed, but the temporary flooding onto the roadway can’t be addressed by them. I think they realize that is the weakest link for them. We’ll see how dedicated they are to that facility.
Although Facebook has reportedly elevated its office space to avert the rising sea water from flooding into the building, the roads leading to the campus still run the risk of getting inundated in the coming decades.
In contrast, Google's Mountain View office is better elevated and hence a bit safer regarding its proximity from the flood affected shoreline.
If the Antartic icebergs continue to disintegrate at the current rate, even Google runs the risk of being submerged under water as the sea level is estimated to rise over 6ft by the end of this century.