New photos show extent of rapid erosion of Newtok coastline

The erosion of Newtok's coastline, October 12, 2018 (Courtesy Calvin Tom)
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) — Photos from Newtok show a rapidly eroding coastline — nearly 40 feet since Sept. 27 — as residents nearest to the coastline are preparing to leave their homes.

Newtok resident Calvin Tom shared photos with KTUU showing the extent of erosion over the course of a week, from Oct. 5 - Oct 12.

Tom told Channel 2 that a 20 foot shoreline marker had been washed away late Friday evening, with a storm expected to continue battering the coast through the weekend.

According to Tom, a post marking 58 feet from the nearest home was washed away on or around Sept. 27, indicating that nearly 40 feet of coast has been washed away in just over two weeks.

Tom says a Newtok tribal administrator told him to begin preparations to leave his home on the coast after he returns from a weekend trip to Bethel.

"I'm afraid I won't have a home to come back to," Tom told Channel 2 News.


The erosion of Newtok's coastline, October 12, 2018 (Courtesy Calvin Tom)