Friday, January 19, 2018

Recent Storms Have Meant Changes in How sand Where To and Not To Rebuild

Flood Plain Building Requirements
     Here in Florida, technology has helped people keep on top of disaster potentials for repeat flooding events.   A flood zone mapping app  created by MIT lets people use Twitter, Facebook or other media to source information about the depth of water and risks to specific areas, allowing people to avoid the most dangerous regions.

     Now that the waters have receded and highways accessible again, people will begin the slow process of returning to their homes.   6.3 million people were evacuated in Florida, some of which will never be able to return to their homes.  Some of those who find their homes and communities destroyed may decide to move away rather than face the risk of another disaster.

    Twelve years after Hurricane Katrina, the population of New Orleans is still lower than its pre-Katrina levels.  Those who do returned home found themselves forced to live in flood-prone areas because they cannot afford to pay the higher rents in safer areas.  This will be a factor in a growing economic inequality occurring in many cities hit by Irma.    Long term effects from Irma could reshape how cities like Miami and others facing an extreme number of occurrences of rising sea levels will rebuild after these storms.

      There are some very hard questions that need to be asked as to which places should be returned to mother nature and which to rebuild upon.  In the past, things would just be rebuilt stronger, without any consideration of the real problem of the area. With the threat of climate change, it might be time to rethink that mindset, he says.

     Down here in the Florida Keys, these are questions that are having to be asked as well.  Much of the problem down here is handled by placing houses on 6 to 10 feet above the flood plain foundations on which the houses are built.  Looking around Key West, there was minimal damage to this type of structures.  Many of the trailer parks that were destroyed by Irma are being replaced by this type of structures.   All of this has a price tag, but if you are going to stay in a flood plain, the price of this type of housing is higher, but not as high as the increasing flood in