New York is building a wall to hold back the ocean

  • Published on Jun 10, 2019
  • Climate change is leading to increasingly violent storms. Can seawalls hold back floods?
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    Staten Island recently received funding for a nearly 5-mile-long seawall to protect its coast. But the plan raises a lot of questions. We’re living in a dangerously dynamic world: Hurricanes are getting worse, wildfires are rampant in California, extreme heat is melting roads in India, and sea levels continue to rise. Will a wall really be enough to protect our coastal cities?
    Alissa Walker from Curbed talked to us about how it’s too late to stop the changing climate, but not too late to change how we think about infrastructure.
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Comments • 3 010

  • Vox
    Vox  3 months ago +280

    This piece was a collaboration with our sister-site, Curbed! Check out the original article here:

    And for more information on how to build a resilient city check out Alissa Walker’s piece

    - Kim

    • MICHGO1
      MICHGO1 14 days ago


      LONNIE DOBBINS 2 months ago

      @BLAIR M Schirmer
      Thank you!
      I wanted to read the comments and find someone that's actually thinking what all of this means.
      They're talking of building a wall around Staten Island Only. *What About The City?*
      What are they going to do for it?
      *Walls Are Impossible All Over The City!*
      They can raise homes up higher but not skyscrapers!
      Right now we need TOTAL Suspension Of All Emissions Just To Keep It From Being Worse. It's to late to stop it now.
      They need to think about moving.

  • Carys Williams
    Carys Williams 11 hours ago

    I go to ny harbor school

  • Sofía
    Sofía Day ago +1

    Everyone: how about we work together to try to solve climate change and avoid the end of the world
    America: Nah that’ll never work... walls on the other hand

  • Sofía
    Sofía Day ago

    America will do anything to avoid addressing climate change

  • Donald J. Trump
    Donald J. Trump 4 days ago

    I am going to build a great wall of New York's southern border, and I will make Bikini Bottom pay for it.

  • Friend of Tellus
    Friend of Tellus 5 days ago

    Great idea !

  • John Spinelli
    John Spinelli 7 days ago

    Why dont we just take New York and push it somewhere else?

  • Ankit Sonu
    Ankit Sonu 7 days ago

    New York's solution is Similar to Trump's 😂😂

  • Khushal Paherwar
    Khushal Paherwar 7 days ago

    This is just gonna be another Jakarta situation

  • livia
    livia 7 days ago

    fun fact: when the dutch controlled nyc and was new amsterdam, wall street was an actual wall

  • pauline palmer
    pauline palmer 8 days ago

    I thought walls are bad.

  • Tazmanian Devil
    Tazmanian Devil 11 days ago

    I worked in Staten Island on the aftermath of hurricane Sandy! I was with the army corps of engineers removing the debris! And my humble opinion is that it could be also considered to do like the way Japan used in there coastline when typhoons hit their land! I can't remember the proper mame of it but i called them cement starts! There are gigantic in size and weight tons! They could be put across the shore line to at least minimise the waves before they impact the shore! Is just a thought!

  • The King
    The King 11 days ago +1

    Building a wall to protect us citizens? Thats racist.

    • Edwin Cintron
      Edwin Cintron 9 days ago

      😂🤣😂😁That's too hilarious.. I'm dying laughing lol... greatest comment here

  • Jame Brooke
    Jame Brooke 12 days ago


  • Yogshaye Ramhota
    Yogshaye Ramhota 13 days ago +1

    Nothing can defy the force of nature so why build a wall

  • Climate Satyagraha : The Power of Truth

    This is really sad. For every city that can afford to build a wall, there are alteast 10 which can't.
    But the one which can afford to is the one which is mostly responsible for the sea level rise.
    Stop this before its too late.

  • Blatio1
    Blatio1 19 days ago

    Well NY'rs, per your logic, that makes you racist against the ocean.

  • Dota Game
    Dota Game 21 day ago

    Just drink the water lol..

  • Leia Jiang
    Leia Jiang 21 day ago

    And then one day it's gonna not work

  • Leia Jiang
    Leia Jiang 21 day ago

    Solar energy

  • Dante Hyndman
    Dante Hyndman 21 day ago

    “The democrats want open waterways and to let all illegal water inland”

  • Carlos García
    Carlos García 21 day ago

    good luck

    THEBIGMEOW 22 days ago

    Usa should stop oppressing others countries so God will not punish them with mere water 💦

  • larrabeejl
    larrabeejl 22 days ago

    Climate change 😂😂😂 complaining about houses flooding in a flood prone area where they dont belong then blaming climate change for humans stupidity.

  • Ricky911
    Ricky911 23 days ago +2

    A seawall?? Is this what's gonna happen to all coastal cities??Seriously, how about we actually start to care about climate change instead?

  • Zacharius
    Zacharius 23 days ago

    When those walls are built, can they add some mechanism to those walls that will use the kinetic energy of the ocean crashing into the walls to generate clean energy? Just an idea...but why not harness that energy...

  • SeekerFantasy
    SeekerFantasy 24 days ago

    they might be great, but why they didnt built detectors machines like japan did after 2011 tsunami?

  • Amy Stambaugh
    Amy Stambaugh 25 days ago

    "small borough of staten island", lol it's bigger than the bronx and manhattan

  • Duke Edward
    Duke Edward Month ago

    So building a wall to keep the ocean at bay is okay but building a wall in the southern states to keep the drugs guns and murderers at bay, is racist?

  • katerina economou
    katerina economou Month ago

    anyone more interested in the oyster solution (which wasn't properly explainted) should check out Kate Orf's "Oyster-tecture" project, and lectures. Very cool.

  • Lumberjack king the great

    Too keep out the water Mexicans

  • Ivan Devčić
    Ivan Devčić Month ago +1

    2017: "Let's build a wall at the border with Mexico"
    2019:"Let's build a wall at the New York coastline"

  • Samuel Cunningham
    Samuel Cunningham Month ago


  • jon silveira
    jon silveira Month ago

    wall street

  • Nathaniel Turner
    Nathaniel Turner Month ago

    LOL but haven't you heard? Walls don't work and are immoral.

    • Steven Ratti
      Steven Ratti Month ago

      Boy, conservatives Do love to inflate a mere talking point into a huge thing.

  • Dearon Tufankjian
    Dearon Tufankjian Month ago

    How about we just start actually making big changes to our society. Building a wall won’t last too long. We need to get the world leaders together to sit down and find a way to decrease the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere!!!!!!!!

  • Archive -
    Archive - Month ago

    Trump:I will build a Great Wall
    Me in New York:welp I guess he did it

    If I stole a comment then have a cookie :3🍪🍪

  • CJC
    CJC Month ago +1

    BUILD THAT WALL AND LET THE HURRICANES PAY FOR IT! Now that’s what we have to do, after Hurricane Sandy’s and it’s impressive 15ft Storm Surge I got worried about climate change and more flooding events that could turn NY like Atlantis, building a sea wall at least 30 ft high around New York is a very good idea so when the big one comes with a even bigger storm surge then Sandy, where ready, New Orleans, Miami, and Huston should do the same!

  • trok 13
    trok 13 Month ago +1

    HAARP has alot more to do with climate change than people realize.. js

    • trok 13
      trok 13 Month ago

      @The Saxon also look into how Banksters threatened Japan w/an earthquake.. Clearly you don't know anything about HAARP.. if you did, you certainly wouldn't of commented what did. Have a nice day!

    • trok 13
      trok 13 Month ago

      @The Saxon oh wowww.. Look Into it, and the UN peace treaty of '76.. Btw, I don't even watch Alex Jones lol

  • Brandon Stennett
    Brandon Stennett Month ago

    Hey ,favor could you guys explain the NO BAIL SWEDEN SITUATION ? would help us ASAP.

  • Lawke
    Lawke Month ago

    Remember the Murphy's law : "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong".
    And if I can give any advice to any New Yorker : If one day you hear about the Wall Street's headquarters planning to leave New York, then you should also leave quickly!

  • André Yuri Vicente de Pádua

    Sid Mier's Civilization VI INTENSIFFIES

  • Meme Master
    Meme Master Month ago

    Why don’t you just stop climate change while we still cannnnn

  • Mateja Saric
    Mateja Saric Month ago

    ooohhh boyyy more wallssss

  • Deepak
    Deepak Month ago

    2:08 thank me later

  • all for one
    all for one Month ago

    U reach on moon or even on neptune.... or u can do whatever but u cant control the nature...

  • Throwaway1234
    Throwaway1234 Month ago

    Just let New York flood. There is nothing worth saving there.

    • Steven Ratti
      Steven Ratti Month ago

      And what places would you save? The entire coastline of, say, Texas? Or all of Florida? Or the Central Valley of California (which, mind you, is one of the major food production centers of the entire nation)? Here's an idea- why don't we put politics aside, and try to save it All?

  • Joshua Koning
    Joshua Koning Month ago

    call the netherlands

  • The Blue Gamer
    The Blue Gamer Month ago

    Attack on Water

  • J G P
    J G P 2 months ago +1

    why did it exacerbate problems in india?

  • Risick
    Risick 2 months ago

    Coastal states: AAAAAAAAAAH
    Me: laughs in midwest

  • killer 1560
    killer 1560 2 months ago

    Why don't they make the sea wall out of trash

  • Gaius von Bonaparte
    Gaius von Bonaparte 2 months ago

    New york is ocean phobic!

  • Macbasil
    Macbasil 2 months ago +1

    That won’t work, the power of nature is unpredictable and powerful.

    • Steven Ratti
      Steven Ratti Month ago

      Perhaps you might talk to the Dutch. They might not agree with you.

  • Robby D
    Robby D 2 months ago

    Aren't walls bad?

    • Steven Ratti
      Steven Ratti Month ago

      Only if they make no sense. Or, of course, are already there, like the barriers between the USA and Mexico.

  • Thomas McDonald
    Thomas McDonald 2 months ago

    Its racist don't build it

  • anita shirazi
    anita shirazi 2 months ago

    We worry about all these small problems when most of them are caused by climate change

  • lollYpoppY234
    lollYpoppY234 2 months ago

    Seriously, a wall is literally THE WORST type of coastal protection system you can built... way to go!

  • Khalid Abdulghani
    Khalid Abdulghani 2 months ago

    No one:
    Nature: Tsunami
    Donald Trump: let's build a wall!

  • noah
    noah 2 months ago

    Sea walls are mostly a joke. They break or water goes over them nearly every time. They're never tall or strong enough. If your going to build it then make it taller ad stronger with a curved out top. Otherwise can still come over and erode the soil on the other side and wamo

    • Steven Ratti
      Steven Ratti Month ago

      A sea wall can be backed up with levees, which we already know work. You just have to make certain that the levees aren't weakened by erosion and whatnot.