Magazine article Risk Management

New York's Plan for Storm Protection

Magazine article Risk Management

New York's Plan for Storm Protection

Article excerpt

Following the wreckage caused by Superstorm Sandy throughout New York, many have speculated that, due to shifting climate patterns and rising sea levels, this type of severe weather and flooding could become more frequent. As a result, the city has been working on ways to protect vulnerable areas and ensure that devastation on this scale becomes less likely. In June, it released an in-depth report on how to build "A Stronger, More Resilient New York."

The first phase of the city's plan includes 37 specific initiatives that will increase resiliency in various ways. Many include common recommendations such as levees, seawalls and storm-surge barriers. But given the nature of the risk, the report also suggests some more temporary defenses.

"In the case of areas that are subject to the risks posed by infrequent, but damaging, extreme weather events--but where permanent features are undesirable or infeasible--one solution is to rely more heavily on deployable floodwalls. These systems, which consist of moveable posts and panels [that] are, at times of vulnerability, affixed to permanent, in-ground foundations, can be removed immediately after a threat recedes. …

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