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How Flooding Will Affect DC-Area Residences In the Coming Years

by UrbanTurf Staff

On Monday, a month's worth of rain fell in a couple hours in the DC region resulting in flooded roads and stranded motorists, and providing a palpable sense of how susceptible the area is to flooding. 

Last year, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) released a report that examined how many U.S. properties would be affected by "chronic" flooding as sea levels continue to rise. In the DC region, the conclusions were sobering. 

"Underwater: Rising Seas and the Implications for US Coastal Real Estate" shows that upwards of 300,000 homes along the coasts are at risk of chronic flooding within the next 30 years. By 2100, as many as 2.4 million homes with an aggregate value of $912 billion could be at risk. 

The Effect That Chronic Flooding May Have on the DC Area by 2100: Figure 1
Homes per state susceptible to chronic flooding in high-risk scenario. 

In the DC region, 283 homes in Alexandria (out of a current total of 41,616) will be susceptible to chronic flooding by 2100, leading to property value losses of $323 million. For the entire state of Maryland, there could be 68,183 homes susceptible to chronic flooding at a loss of $21 billion; in Virginia, the tally would be 114,940 homes at a loss of $30.8 billion.

While DC proper won't see effects from flooding on the same scale as Maryland or Virginia, measures are already being taken in anticipation of the rising water. In April, Eleanor Holmes Norton introduced a bill amending the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 to designate DC as a "coastal state". If this bill passes, the designation would make DC eligible to receive federal funding and grants for coastal flood protection. 

See other articles related to: flooding in dc, flood zone

This article originally published at http://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/how-flooding-will-affect-dc-area-residences-in-the-coming-years/15632

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