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Extreme floods expose the flaws in FEMA’s risk maps

By Samuel Oakford, John Muyskens and Others Photo: Taylor Monfort-Eaton

This year, extreme precipitation deluged communities across the United States — a hallmark risk of a warming climate. Government flood-insurance maps often left residents unprepared for the threat.


How rising sea levels could damage building foundations

By YCC Team Photo: James Willamor

Storm surge. Tidal flooding. Erosion. Some impacts of sea-level rise are easy to see, but others are hidden.

“What happens when the sea level rises to the built environment from underneath?” says Hussam Mahmoud of Colorado State University.


On the edge of retreat

By Chris Mooney and Others

A century ago, about 250 people lived on Hog Island, a seven-mile expanse off the Virginia coast. They raised livestock and gathered oysters. They lived in a town called Broadwater, worked at the lighthouse and Coast Guard station, and danced at night in a social hall called the Red Onion.


Florida beaches were already running low on sand. Then Ian and Nicole hit.

By Lori Rozsa Photo: Octavio Jones, The Washington Post

In the days since Hurricane Nicole lashed this stretch of Florida coast with punishing winds and a powerful storm surge, contractor A.J. Rockwell has found himself on an urgent mission. He has to find sand — tons of it — and fast.


NASA study: rising sea level could exceed estimates for U.S. coasts

By Sally Younger Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

By 2050, sea level along contiguous U.S. coastlines could rise as much as 12 inches (30 centimeters) above today’s waterline, according to researchers who analyzed nearly three decades of satellite observations. The results from the NASA Sea Level Change Team could help refine near-term projections for coastal communities that are bracing for increases in both catastrophic and nuisance flooding in coming years.


Studying climate change, sea level rise in Clearwater could prevent catastrophic damage, officials hope

By Regina Gonzalez

The city of Clearwater has set out to understand how it will be impacted by climate change, sea level rise, and the devastation of tropical storms and hurricanes.


Building with nature: Can reviving a marsh save this California town from sea level rise?

By Rosanna Xia Photo: Paul Kuroda, Los Angeles Times

Standing on the edge of a repurposed marina, at the end of a long wooden walkway that harked back to more prosperous times, Brenda Buxton took in the disorienting landscape.


When the water rises

By Carol Kaufmann Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

A wildlife refuge along the Chesapeake Bay offers a “fast-motion” view of the effects of climate change and rising waters along the nation’s coastlines.


Mississippi River Basin adapts as climate change brings extreme rain and flooding

By Juanpablo Ramirez-Franco Photo: Scott Olson, Getty Images

After a torrential downpour began on Aug. 7, the Pecatonica River jumped its banks in Freeport, Ill. and flooded the basement of Laurie Thomas’ family home, nearly to the ceiling.
This latest was Freeport’s fifth major flood in just the past four years. Thomas and her mother have experienced flooding at least 15 times in the past 20 years.


Amid rising seas, Atlantic City has no plans for retreat

By Ted Shaffrey Photo: Seth Wenig, AP Photo

Some cities around the world are pulling back from shorelines, as rising seas from climate change increase flooding. But so far, retreat appears out of the question for Atlantic City, New Jersey.The breezy getaway town is on the water on a barrier, which was once reachable only by boat but in modern times via a causeway. The city fully occupies a small piece of land, water on either side, just above sea level.