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The Insurance Industry’s New Role: Climate Change Leader

Hurricane Sandy has definitely ushered in a new era of expectations for the National Flood Insurance Program- NFIP. After the debacle of Katrina, the agency is now offering a product with a huge built-in downside for all of us as taxpayers. Going forward, our prospects look less secure each year we witness ‘unexpected’ climate events.


[Hurricane Betsy Wikipedia- 1965

Its becoming increasingly evident that the current special flood hazard area (SFHA) stipulations between the federal government and local coastal communities will be strained as losses grow ever more severe with Sandy-like weather events within the FIRM 100-year boundary. Indeed, the new Hurricane Sandy Advisory Base Flood Elevations (ABFEs) and preliminary FIRM maps for the New York coastal zones which capture approximately 35,000 new buildings are very obvious, visual reminders that ‘business as usual’ is over.


With growing evidence of unsustainable risk in our regional coastal zones, politicians like New York’s Andrew Cuomo are simply proposing ‘too good to be true’ proposals to stressed property owners: buy up risky property and return it to nature. Its a hard deal to pass up for all of us- effected property owners and federal taxpayers alike. To follow are diagrams/maps and source links to the new ABFE elevations and associated insurance rates; new ABFE panel revisions and NYT’s map of proposed flood revisions in the NY region.

[New ABFE Elevations & Rates


[Revised ABFE Panels in the NY/NJ Region

[NYT’s Proposed Flood Zone Revisions