In the NewsCurbedJuly 29, 2019

How federal flood policy is, and isn’t, addressing climate change today

The front line of climate change policy isn’t new proposals for wind energy, mass transit, or the Green New Deal: it’s how we deal with, plan, and pay for catastrophic flooding exacerbated by changing weather patterns. The government has repeatedly failed to invest in properly updating federal flood maps, which has put many existing homes at risk, and led many to develop in areas that are increasingly prone to flooding. In areas of the Midwest that faced a deluge this spring, many areas near overflowing rivers lacked any kind of flood insurance, making rebuilding that much more costly for citizens and communities. The information gap has inspired scientists from Columbia University, flood modeling firm Fathom, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the research institute Rhodium Group, Rutgers University, the University of California–Berkeley, and the University of Bristol to partner with the non-profit First Street Foundation on a new project to update and make flood risk information public, in response to what they see as dereliction of duty on the part of the government.