Everyone wants to live near the beach, it seems.
Nearly 11 million more Americans will move to the coasts by 2020, putting more of the population at risk from extreme coastal storms, according to a report released today (March 25) by the National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration. The nation's shorelinesalready hold the most densely packed communities in the country, with 446 people per square mile versus the national average of 105 people per square mile (excluding Alaska), found the NOAA National Coastal Population Report. The population density is six times greater at the coast than inland. (One square mile is about 2.5 square kilometers.)
"The coast is substantially more crowded than the U.S. as a whole," report editor Kristen Crossett, of NOAA's National Ocean Service said in a statement. "And the projected growth in coastal areas will increase population density at a faster rate than the country as a whole."
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