Cars driving in high tide in Palm Beach, Florida.

Moon wobble: the upcoming natural event that could bring flooding to coastal cities in 2030

The Moon’s natural cycle is 18.6 years long, and during those years, as the moon tilts and shifts, it appears to wobble. It sounds dramatic and unnatural, but this phenomenon has been recorded repeatedly over time since the 1700s. 

For half of this 18.6-year cycle, the Moon will suppress the tides of the world and keep them on the lower end. As for the other half, the Moon will give the tides a boost and increase sea level. This rising and falling of the tides have never really been an issue in the past.

We have seen flooding but nothing on a catastrophic scale. However, the next half of the Moon’s cycle is set to start around mid-2030. This is the high tide cycle and mixed with our current climate change pace, we will be facing severe flooding issues throughout the world, in all coastal towns. 

It’s completely normal for the moon to wobble.

According to NASA, these floods will come in clusters known as sunny day floods or nuisance floods to coastal cities around the world. Hitting them with floods for a month or even longer. The severity of the floods will depend on the position of the Sun, Earth, and the mighty Moon. 

These floods are expected to overwhelm storm drains, cause extensive damage to buildings, and destroy roads. Also, public health issues will become prevalent from standing water and water damage to waterfront properties and public infrastructure caused by these floods, like mold and rust.

Not to mention the overwhelm on the economy, businesses will have to shut down due to flooding in the streets and in their stores. The aftermath of such floods may be devastating to people’s livelihoods and to the economy of any of these coastal towns around the world. 

In the USA, the entire mainland coastline will see a rise in the number of floods. However, Alaska won’t see the same increase in floods for another decade because these land areas are rising due to long-term geological processes.

In Canada, coastal cities are already seeing an increase in flooding. The flooding is expected to get worse with the next moon wobble in mid-2030. These worsening floods are expected to affect infrastructure significantly and could leave communities displaced on the coastal line. 

A number of other countries throughout the world are also already seeing some devastating floods, such as Germany, Belgium, and China. These floods have been catastrophic, leaving thousands homeless and hundreds missing. 

King tide floods parking lot in Myrtle Beach SC. Picture: Myrtle Beach Travel park.
King tide floods parking lot in Myrtle Beach SC. Picture: Myrtle Beach Travel park.

If it’s a natural occurrence why worry about 2030?

The sea level has risen worldwide by approximately 24 cm since 1880 (8 to 9 inches), with most of that rise just in the past 25 years. Adding in a moon wobble that will boost tides worldwide is a cause for concern. It’s important to notice that we are now in the tide amplifying phase of the moon, but it’s in 10 years that we predict with more deicing in the mountains and the poles that this same moon phase may bring a lot of problems. 

Having NASA put their observations out for the world to see. It is a solemn reminder of the state of our planet but is giving coastal cities a chance to prepare. So they may remain resilient and even thrive in the near future.

Moon Wobble explained video on Youtube.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Moon Wobble

What is the Moon wobble?

It isn’t a new phenomenon, according to NASA. It is a cyclical shift in the moon’s orbit every 18.6 years and they’ve been recorded since 1728. The wobble affects the moon’s gravitational pull and can either suppress or amplify ocean tides on earth.

How does the moon affect ocean tides?

High and low tides are caused by the moon. The moon’s gravitational pull generates something called the tidal force. The tidal force causes Earth—and its water—to bulge out on the side closest to the moon and the side farthest from the moon. These bulges of water are high tides.

Why moon wobble means disaster?

It doesn’t. The problem is specific to mid 2030s when in 10 more years from now we will have seen more deicing in the mountains and the poles meaning higher ocean level.

Is the moon wobble going to exacerbate climate change?

No, it’s the other way around. Climate change will cause deicing and more water in the oceans and that will exacerbate the effects of the wobble.

Max Francisco