Faced with the possibility of devastating groundwater pollution following the Fukushima nuclear reactor meltdown, the Japa- nese government formed a plan to create an immense ice wall below the earth’s surface. Not quite a true wall of ice, the wall is actually a network of pipes containing coolant at temperatures below -4O C. The result is a vast aquifer that keeps water in. A similar method could be used to do the opposite: keeping rising sea levels from coming up under the subsurface of the land. Ice walls have been proposed in the mining areas of Lee County, Florida to prevent the “draw down” causes by mining pits.
The concept of an ice wall is experimental, they are highly dependent on energy and may have results other than what is anticipated. However, innovative practices like these in very select locations may become more vital for the continued success of South Florida.