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When a hurricane makes landfall it brings extreme wind, heavy rain, powerful waves, and storm surge. Of these hazards, storm surge is often the most dangerous: Historically, surge has caused more deaths than wind damage. During a hurricane, wind exerts stress on the water, causing currents that push water downwind. The surface of the sea can rise suddenly and dramatically rise as wind speeds approach their maximum. Water can rush rapidly into zones of shallow bathymetry and quickly flood the land. With climate change, storm surge will become more threatening. Sea level rise will elevate mean tide levels, increasing the height of storm surge by simple numerical addition. At the same time, hurricanes may become more intense, and the more intense storms more frequent, also contributing to the chances that severe surge will lead to flood inundation in coastal communities.
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Kerry Emanuel, Divine Wind (New York: Oxford University Press, 2005), 147.
Ian Hacking, The Taming of Chance (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990), 2.
Mark Fackler, “Tsunami Warnings, Written in Stone,” April 20, 2011.
Lewis Carroll, The Hunting of the Snark (London: Macmillan, 1876).
National Research Council, Water Science and Technology Board, Board on Earth Sciences and Resources/Mapping Science Committee, Committee on FEMA Flood Maps, Mapping the Zone: Improving Flood Map Accuracy (Washington, DC: National Academies Press, 2009), 14.
Scott Gabriel Knowles and Howard C. Kunreuther, “Troubled Waters: The National Flood Insurance Program in Historical Perspective,” in Journal of Policy History 26:3 (2014): 334.
National Research Council et al., Mapping the Zone, 17.
Sarah Jo Peterson, “An Unflinching Look at Flood Risk,” in Urban Land: The Magazine of the Urban Land Institute, November 21, 2014. http://urbanland.uli.org/sustainability/unflinching-look-flood-risk/
National Research Council et al., Mapping the Zone, 21.
Erwann O. Michel-Kerjan, “Catastrophe Economics: The National Flood Insurance Program,” in The Journal of Economic Perspectives 21:4 (Fall 2010): 177.
Al Shaw, Theodoric Meyer, and Christie Thompson, “Federal Flood Maps Left New York Unprepared for Sandy—and FEMA Knew It,” in Pro Publica, December 6, 2013. http://www.propublica.org/article/federal-flood-maps-left-new-york-unprepared-for-sandy-and-fema-knew-it
Sarah Jo Peterson, “An Unflinching Look at Flood Risk.”
FEMA, “Map Modernization.” https://www.fema.gov/map-modernization
National Research Council et al., Mapping the Zone, 1.
FEMA, “Region II Coastal Analysis and Mapping,” http://www.region2coastal.com/
The Biggert–Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act requires FEMA to consider using the “best available science regarding future changes in sea levels, precipitation, and intensity of hurricanes” in its flood maps, http://insideclimatenews.org/news/20130204/climate-change-global-warming-flood-zonehurricane-sandy-new-york-city-fema-federal-maps-revised-sea-level-rise
NOAA’s Sea Level Rise Planning Tool, Georgetown Climate Center, Georgetown Law, June 2013, http://www.georgetownclimate.org/resources/noaas-sea-level-rise-planning-tool; Sea Level Rise Planning Tool–New Jersey and New York State, last modified June 16, 2015, http://www.arcgis.com/home/item.html?id=2960f1e066544582ae0f0d988ccb3d27
Emanuel, Divine Wind, 149.
Ibid., 256; Kerry Emanuel, “The Hurricane–Climate Connection,” in Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, May 2008.
Morris A. Bender, Thomas R. Knutson, Robert E. Tuleya, Joseph J. Sirutis, Gabriel A. Vecchi, Stephen T. Garner, and Isaac M. Held, “Modeled Impact of Anthropogenic Warming on the Frequency of Intense Atlantic Hurricanes,” in Science 327 (2010): 454; Thomas R. Knutson, John L. McBride, Johnny Chan, Kerry Emanuel, Greg Holland, Chris Landsea, Isaac Held, James P. Kossin, A.K. Srivastava, and Masato Sugi, “Tropical Cyclones and Climate Change,” in Nature Geoscience (2010).
Directive 2007/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of October 23, 2007 on the assessment and management of flood risks, http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32007L0060
National Research Council et al., Mapping the Zone, 93.
France: http://www.aquitaine.developpement-durable.gouv.fr/cartes-et-rapports-d-accompagnement-des-tri-r912.html; “Member States’ Examples of Flood Hazard and Flood Risk Maps,” document prepared for the 2015 EU Water Conference, http://ec.europa.eu/environment/water/flood_risk/pdf/MS%20examples.pdf
For more about global climate models, see Paul Edwards, A Vast Machine: Computer Models, Climate Data, and the Politics of Global Warming (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2010); and G. Flato, J. Marotzke, B. Abiodun, P. Braconnot, S.C. Chou, W. Collins, P. Cox, F. Driouech, S. Emori, V. Eyring, C. Forest, P. Gleckler, E. Guilyardi, C. Jakob, V. Kattsov, C. Reason, and M. Rummukainen, “2013: Evaluation of Climate Models,” in Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis, Contribution of Working Group I to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, ed. T.F. Stocker, D. Qin, G.-K. Plattner, M. Tignor, S.K. Allen, J. Boschung, A. Nauels, Y. Xia, V. Bex, and P.M. Midgley (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), https://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_Chapter09_FINAL.pdf
Ning Lin, Kerry Emanuel, Michael Oppenheimer, and Erik Vanmarcke, “Physically-Based Assessment of Hurricane Surge Threat under Climate Change,” in Nature Climate Change 2:6 (2012): 462–67; Ning Lin, Kerry Emanuel, J.A. Smith, and Erick Vanmarcke, “Risk Assessment of Hurricane Storm Surge for New York City,” in Journal of Geophysical Research 115 (2010).
Kerry Emmanuel, Ragoth Sundararajan, and John Williams, “Hurricanes and Global Warming: Results from Downscaling IPCC AR4 Simulations,” in Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, March 2008: 349; method also explained in Kerry Emanuel, Sai Ravela, Emanuel Vivant, and Camille Risi, “A Statistical Deterministic Approach to Hurricane Risk Assessment,” in Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, March 2006.
For more information about comparing climate models, see 2013: Evaluation of Climate Models.
The other RCPs in the IPCC report are titled RCP2.6, RCP4.5, and RCP6.0. In contrast to RCP8.5, these pathways account for greenhouse gas emissions to decline at various points in the twenty-first century.
Richard A. Luettich and J.J. Westerink, “A Three Dimensional Circulation Model Using a Direct Stress Solution over the Vertical,” in Computational Methods in Water Resources IX, Volume 2: Mathematical Modeling in Water Resources, ed. T. Russell et al. (Southampton, UK: Computational Mechanics Publications, 1992).
Lin et al., “Physically-Based Assessment,” 5.
Robert E. Kopp, Radley M. Horton, Christopher M. Little, Jerry X. Mitrovica, Michael Oppenheimer, D.J. Rasmussen, Benjamin J. Strauss, and Claudia Tebaldi, “Probabilistic 21st and 22nd Century Sea-Level Projections at a Global Network of Tide-Gauge Sites,” in Earth’s Future 2 (2014): 383–406.
Jack Eggleston and Jason Pope, 2013, “Land Subsidence and Relative Sea- Level Rise in the Southern Chesapeake Bay Region,” in U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1392, 30 pp., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/cir1392
In 1968, the Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC) recommended requirements for seismic design in the case of minor, moderate, and major earthquakes. This range is a precursor to the multiple-scenario planning of PBD.
“Next-Generation Performance-Based Seismic Design Guidelines: Program Plan for New and Existing Buildings,” FEMA 445, August 2006, 3.
“Performance Based Seismic Design of Buildings: An Action Plan for Future Studies,” FEMA 283, September 1996, 1.
“Next-Generation Performance,” 2.
John King, “How Safe Are Rising S.F. Towers in the Wake of Napa Earthquake?” in San Francisco Chronicle, August 17, 2014.
- Mapping Coastal Futures
Catherine Seavitt Nordenson
- Island Press/Center for Resource Economics
- Chapter 4