This national analysis identifies the number of US homes at risk from chronic flooding over the coming decades due to sea level rise. It also shows the current property value, estimated population, and portion of the property tax base at risk. Information is available by state, community, and zip code.
Along nearly 13,000 miles of coastline of the contiguous United States, hundreds of thousands of buildings lie in the path of rising seas: schools, hospitals, churches, factories, homes, and businesses. As sea levels rise, persistent high-tide flooding of homes, yards, roads, and business districts will begin to render properties effectively unlivable, and neighborhoods—even whole communities— nancially unattractive and potentially unviable.
Yet property values in most coastal real estate markets do not currently reflect this risk. And most homeowners, communities, and investors are not aware of the nancial losses they may soon face.
This analysis estimates the number of homes and commercial properties throughout the coastal United States that will be put at risk from chronic, disruptive flooding—defined as flooding that occurs 26 times per year or more (Dahl et al. 2017; Spanger-Siegfried et al. 2017)—in the coming decades.
In 2012, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) initiated a five-year project to integrate sea level rise adaptation into current planning mechanisms, including the local comprehensive plan, hazard mitigation plan, and post-disaster redevelopment plan. One of the focus areas is to provide statewide guidance on how to implement an Adaptation Action Area at the local level. Through funding from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), DEO engaged the South Florida Regional Planning Council (SFRPC) to assist in the research for Adaptation Action Area implementation strategies. The SFRPC is working with the City of Fort Lauderdale, which is serving as one of the state's Adaptation Action Area pilot communities, and Broward County to test adaptation policy options to be incorporated into the City's Comprehensive Plan. This report is part of a portfolio of resources developed during the Community Resiliency Initiative, a five-year project funded by NOAA through the Florida Department of Environmental Planning’s Florida Coastal Office and carried out by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. The Community Resiliency Initiative focused on coordinating planning efforts throughout the State and integrating sea level rise adaptation into existing planning mechanisms, including local comprehensive plans, local hazard mitigation plans, and disaster redevelopment plans. The Community Resiliency Initiative worked to examine existing data and practices related to current sea level rise adaptation planning efforts and develop guidance for agencies and communities to consider as they plan for and implement adaptation strategies. More information about the Community Resiliency Initiative can be obtained by contacting the Florida Coastal Office at (850) 245-2094 and asking for the Florida Resilient Coastlines Program.