Tagged: Floods

FEMA's Technical Mapping Advisory Council makes recommendations on flood maps. (Credit: Walter Jennings/Wikipedia)

Outdated Flood Maps Fuel Reform

When the 1,000-year-flood event hit south Louisiana last month, an estimated 60,000 structures were damaged, including those both inside and outside of the flood zone. In a hearing last week, Representative John Mica (FL-07) noted that 80 percent of homeowners did not have flood insurance because, based on maps produced by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), they were not in areas that were considered vulnerable to flooding. These floodmaps are in urgent need of updating and were the focus of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing to review the recommendations of the Technical Mapping Advisory Council’s (TMAC) 2015 Annual Report for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

A USACE project site, the Florida Everglades. (Credit: Hans Stieglitz/Wikipedia)

New Water Resource Projects For Inclusion In WRDA Bill

Strolling down a beach with sand dunes on one side and the ocean on the other or navigating your motorboat through a harbor probably don’t make you think of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). However, USACE’s many duties include designing and carrying out projects for ecosystem restoration, flood control, and coastal navigation, making it the biggest water resources development and management agency in the federal government.

El Niño is the formation of warmer-than-usual ocean waters in the equatorial Pacific, with extensive temperature changes along the coast of South America during the month of December -- hence the Spanish name "El Niño," the Christmas child. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

When Sea Levels Rise, Damage Costs Rise Even Faster

Damages from extreme events like floods are even more relevant than the mean sea level itself when it comes to the costs of climate impacts for coastal regions. However, while it is now rather well understood how sea-levels will rise in the future, only small progress has been made estimating how the implied damage for cities at the coasts will increase during the next decades.