Articles on Coastal flooding

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Protecting coastal wetlands, like this slough in Florida’s Everglades National Park, is a cost-effective way to reduce flooding and storm damage. NPS/C. Rivas

Protecting wetlands helps communities reduce damage from hurricanes and storms

Coastal development is destroying marshes, mangroves and other wetlands that provide valuable protection from hurricanes and storms. Research shows these benefits can be worth millions of dollars.
A woman gets back into her flooded car on the Toronto Indy course on Lakeshore Boulevard in Toronto on July 8, 2013. Housing developers are building housing on known flood plains in cities around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Building housing on flood plains another sign of growing inequality

Cities around the world, including Toronto, are building housing on flood plains knowing the risks in the era of climate change. Here's why that will contribute to growing inequality in our cities.
King tides now regularly breach seawalls meant to protect Torres Strait Island communities, and it happened again last week. Suzanne Long/AAP

King tides and rising seas are predictable, and we’re not doing enough about it

King tides and rising seas are an increasing and predictable threat, but adaptation plans to limit the damage to coastal property are still not managing the political obstacles.
A motorist drives through “nuisance flooding” in Charleston, SC, Oct. 1, 2015. AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton

An X-factor in coastal flooding: Natural climate patterns create hot spots of rapid sea level rise

Climate change is raising global sea levels. Now research shows that 'hot spots' where seas rise another 4 to 5 inches in five years can occur along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, further magnifying floods.
Coastal wetlands are an effective first line of defense and act by slowing down storm surges and reducing flooding. Kelly Fike/USFWS

As communities rebuild after hurricanes, study shows wetlands can significantly reduce property damage

New research by scholars, conservationists and the insurance industry shows that coastal wetlands provide hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of protection from flooding, boosting the case for protecting them.
Houston’s Interstate Highway 45 was totally submerged in the deluge. REUTERS/Richard Carson

Is Hurricane Harvey a harbinger for Houston’s future?

The unpredictability of hurricanes makes it hard to say for sure whether climate change is making them worse. But we do know that sea-level rise and increased evaporation will worsen the impacts.
All tropical cyclones in the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season, with their locations shown at six-hour intervals and color representing maximum wind speed. Cyclonebiskit/Wikipedia

Getting ready for hurricanes: 6 essential reads

Major hurricanes threaten millions of people and billions of dollars in property along the Atlantic coast. Here experts advise on preparing, understanding forecasts and recovering after a storm.
The original conflict between development and preservation of natural assets is broadening as the risks of climate change become ever more obvious. Crystal Ja/AAP

Contested spaces: conflict behind the sand dunes takes a new turn

Conflicts over coastal areas have largely been between development and preserving what makes these attractive places to live. Rising sea levels are now complicating our relationship with the coast.
In the aftermath of 2012’s deadly Hurricane Sandy, New York launched a US$20 billion plan to defend the city against future storms as well as rising sea levels. David Shankbone/Flickr

Sea level rise is real – which is why we need to retreat from unrealistic advice

Managing the impacts of rising seas for some communities is being made more difficult by the actions of governments, homeowners – and even some well-intentioned climate adaptation experts.

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