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NOAA expands flood-mapping tool to cover the Eastern Seaboard

NOAA expands flood-mapping tool to cover the Eastern Seaboard

Coastal communities in much of the eastern United States can now view maps and data related to coastal flooding thanks to an expansion to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Coastal Flood Exposure Mapper.

NOAA's flood exposure risk mapping tool that was developed in New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania has been expanded to cover coastal areas along the entire U.S. East Coast and Gulf of Mexico.

The mapper, which is built on ESRI's ArcGIS Online platform, filters results based on location and several flood scenarios, such as Federal Emergency Management Agency flood designations, shallow coastal flooding associated with high tides or flooding associated with sea level rise or storm surge. According to  NOAA, users can then view flood maps overlaid with any of three exposure maps to see how floodwaters might impact the community, the infrastructure or the ecosystem. All maps can be saved, printed and shared.

“According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the population of coastal communities is going to rise by 8 percent by 2020. Increased vulnerability plus increased population means communities are going to need accurate, reliable, and timely information to prepare for the future,” Holly Bamford, acting assistant secretary of commerce for conservation and management, said. “Equipping our communities with ...  tools like the Coastal Flood Exposure Mapper allows them to become more resilient.”

NASA has also been paying attention to the coastal vulnerabilities.  Last year, it announced a challenge using cross-agency data to create tools and provide information so communities can prepare for coastal catastrophes.

Posted by Mark Pomerleau on May 07, 2015 at 12:35 PM


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