Trump told the mayor of a disappearing island not to worry about sea-level rise. Here's what it's like to live there.
Christian Storm/Business Insider
People have lived on Tangier Island, a tiny patch of land peeking above the Chesapeake Bay, for more than 240 years.But that island - "a speck of mud and marsh that nowhere reaches more than five feet above the tide," as journalist Earl Swift puts it in his new book, "Chesapeake Requiem: A Year with the Watermen of Vanishing Tangier Island" - is on its way to being wiped out as rising waters continue to advance over the land. According to a scientific study published in 2015, the residents of Tangier "may become among the first climate change refugees in the continental USA."Advertisement
Other places have been abandoned because of storms and rising seas. In Ocean Breeze, Staten Island, most residents opted not to return after Hurricane Sandy's 16-foot-storm surge ripped through homes. The Native American community on Isle de Jean Charles has received funding to move all residents to a new location in the face of rising seas and sinking land.
But without dramatic and expensive intervention, Tangier Island will likely need be abandoned within 25 years, according to researchers. Once that happens, it won't be long until there's no longer land to walk on.Here's how Swift describes life on Tangier Island, along with illustrative photos from Reuters and photographer Christian Storm, who visited the island for Business Insider in 2014.