New guidance aims to reduce flood risks in New York

New York News

NEW YORK (WWTI) — New measures will be deployed to help reduce flood risks statewide.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos has announced that new measures will be used by state agencies during project planning to assess and prevent flooding. This includes flooding from sea-level rise, storm surges, and other natural flooding causes.

New guidance from the DEC was developed in consultation from New York’s Department of State, along with agency, authority, university, and business experts. DEC guidance will work to directly implement the Community Risk and Resiliency Act and promote the effective use of natural resources to reduce flooding risks.

According to the DEC, this stems from consideration of the vulnerability of areas in New York. This includes New York City, Long Island, and areas on the Hudson River that may be subject to coastal flooding and sea-level rise. Additionally, the DEC stated that New York is experiencing increases in the amount of rainfall, which would also result in increased flooding risks.

“With climate change increasing the risk of flooding statewide, Governor Cuomo, DEC, and our partners are continuing our efforts to protect New York’s communities and public investments from flooding hazards,” stated Seggos. “The guidance released today will serve as valuable resources for both State agencies and those municipalities that choose to incorporate the State’s flood-risk management guidelines into local planning, and those project designers that recognize the value of using nature-based measures to reduce the risk of flood damage now and into the future.”

With the implementation of the Community Risk and Resiliency act under this new guidance, applicants for certain DEC permits and state funding programs will not be required to provide guidance on local measures regarding flood risk reductions.

These measures include managing development in high-risk areas and preserving natural features such as wetlands and dunes.

According to the DEC, this new guidance will help to incorporate smart growth and natural features into project designs. The new guidance on reducing flood risks was announced on November 4.

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