Author Archives: Philip Orton

Winter Coastal Storms – a Dangerous Mix of Hazards

The winter storm hitting us right now is a reminder of how coastal flooding and winter storms can mix and bring a dangerous combination of hazards.  While the winds in this storm are substantially weaker (good news) than the Blizzard … Continue reading

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Air Quality Measurements on Your Own Window Sill

[This is a guest blog post from Talmor Meir, a PhD student at Stevens Institute in the Maritime Security Laboratory.] Good news to NYC and it’s neighbors: According to The New York Times air across our city is the cleanest it … Continue reading

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HUD Rebuild By Design: Plans for the Future Coast

I am honored to be part of a well-constructed, diverse-minded team for the HUD (federal Housing and Urban Development) post-Sandy “Rebuild By Design” competition, one of 10 successful teams of about 150 that applied.  The team was built and is … Continue reading

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Hurricane Sandy Storm Surge Map Animations

Hurricane Sandy was a wild beast, with a powerful high pressure system, a hurricane, a nor’easter and a high tide all meeting simultaneously to cause the highest flood in NYC history.  As a result the peak flood height was poorly … Continue reading

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Next Mayor: Continue to Lead on Climate

This is an Op-Ed published in the New York Times Room for Debate forum .  It was solicited by the RfD editor, with the topic being “transportation challenges for the next mayor”. It was eventually published under a somewhat different debate topic, … Continue reading

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Not a Priority: Federal Funding to Improve Flood Forecasting

Dear Dr. Orton: Thank you for your submission of the proposal [(censored) title relating to improving our Storm Surge Warning System's forecasting of storm surges] to the [(censored) federal program]. Although your proposal ranked in the top group and was … Continue reading

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Sandy’s Staten Island Flooding Deaths: A Man-Made Disaster?

Ask people how fast the water came into New York Harbor with Hurricane Sandy, or how fast it rose, and you get a wide range of answers. Many people think it was like a tsunami that came in quickly, with … Continue reading

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A Penhorn Polder Wildlife Refuge for Hoboken Flood Protection

We hear all the time how The Netherlands is a demonstration of how the New York City and New Jersey metro area can adapt to coastal flooding.  But we have very little in common with The Netherlands … they have … Continue reading

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Perspectives on NY/NJ Coastal Adaptation to Extreme Flooding Events

I’ve been busy trying to finish up a bunch of storm surge related research for the past few months, but occasionally speaking on various scientific panels and other public events.  So, below I’m linking a few of these that people … Continue reading

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Touring Sandy’s Impact on Lower Manhattan

After an interview at Battery Park on Tuesday the day after for ABC News 20/20 Special “The Perfect Storm”, I went on a walk to see the aftermath of Sandy’s visit to lower Manhattan.  My tour took me from Battery … Continue reading

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