The US may need to build new storm defences as it faces up to more violent weather caused by climate change, the governor of New York has warned.
Andrew Cuomo said that New York seemed to be hit by a "100-year flood every two years now" as a result of rising sea levels caused by global warming.
"There has been a series of extreme weather incidents," Mr Cuomo said. "That is not a political statement, that is a factual statement." Mr Cuomo said that anyone who did not acknowledge "a dramatic change in weather patterns" was "denying reality".
He said New York City was not designed to deal with such dramatic rises in water levels and may need to invest billions on storm barriers or levees like those in New Orleans.
The comments were echoed by Michael Bloomberg, the Mayor of New York, who said that the city was facing storms "much more severe than before".
"Whether that's global warming or what, I don't know, but we'll have to address those issues," he said.
Climate change has been only a marginal issue in the US presidential election campaign. It did not come up once during any of the three presidential debates between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.
The Daily Telegraph