Sea-level legislation puts N.C. Legislature in national spotlight

Legislation to dictate what scientific data could be considered in forecasting sea-level rise on the North Carolina coast is expected to be introduced in the N.C. General Assembly today. In draft form, the proposal would eliminate all projections other than those based on straight-line historical data — dismissing the one-meter (39 inches) rise predicted by state-appointed scientists as likely by the end of this century. The move drew the attention of national television comedian Stephen Colbert on his June 4 episode of The Colbert Show, which featured the topic as “Sink or Swim” in its segment of “The Word.” (The episode is available at


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