Aug. 28 (UPI) -- Most of California's beaches could disappear and acreage burned by wildfires could double by the end of the century, a state report said Tuesday.
In a 132-page report titled, "California's Fourth Climate Change Assessment," the California Natural Resources Agency details changes the state can expect because of climate change.
Since the agency's last report was written in 2012, the state has experienced a five-year drought, numerous wildfires, increased coastal flooding and many spells of extreme heat.
The report comprises research from 44 technical reports and 11 summary reports of the state agency. It predicts an increase of 77 percent of acreage burned by wildfires and a 50 percent increase in the number of wildfires by 2100 if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise.
Up to 67 percent of the state's beaches could erode by 2100, it said, because of a predicted rise in the sea level.
Statewide damages could reach $18 billion if the sea level rises 20 inches, which is within the range of projections. A "once in a century" flood could double the cost of the damages, the report said.
The analysis said the expected higher temperatures will cause increased electrical demand, largely for home air conditioning units, and generation of electricity must keep up with demand.
Heat-related deaths are expected to increase as heart waves will last longer and occur more often, the report says.