I have an oral presentation at the American Geophysical Union Fall Conference in San Francisco, December 4th, 3:25-3:40 pm. It is particularly timely, given the destruction left by Sandy and the growing discussions about storm surge barriers. And similarly, don’t forget that there is the Kerry Emanuel NYC hurricane risk lecture Nov 15th at Columbia (public) with attendance by registration only.
|CONTROL ID: 1502631|
|TITLE: Contrasting NYC Coastal Restoration and Storm Surge Barrier Impacts on Flooding|
|AUTHORS (FIRST NAME, LAST NAME): Philip Mark Orton2, 1, Nickitas Georgas2, Alan F Blumberg2|
|INSTITUTIONS (ALL): 1. Maritime Security Laboratory, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, NJ, United States.
2. Center for Maritime Systems, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, NJ, United States.
|ABSTRACT BODY: A detailed and well-validated hydrodynamic model is used to examine the potential effects of storm surge barriers and Jamaica Bay restoration on coastal flooding in New York City (NYC). The most recent flooding episode, the August 2011 tropical cyclone Irene, is utilized as a test case. Two experiments are run: (a) adding three storm surge barriers, and (b) reducing the depths of channels in Jamaica Bay towards their historical levels before extensive dredging took place. Results show that the surge barriers are an effective method for protecting the city center, but have a negative result of raising flood elevations outside the barriers. The rise is ~5% in the Jamaica Bay watershed, where most of NYC’s low-lying vulnerable population is located. Shallowing Jamaica Bay reduces Irene’s peak storm tide elevation by ~12% in the Bay, reduces normal high tide elevations, but also raises low tides and overall mean water levels. The reduction in storm tide flood elevations is enough to offset decades of anticipated sea level rise. In recent decades, tidal marsh islands in the Bay have been rapidly eroding. Further research should examine how the marshes would adapt to a managed long-term shallowing plan, as well as how their re-growth could provide additional flood protection.|
|KEYWORDS:  OCEANOGRAPHY: PHYSICAL / Tsunamis and storm surges,  OCEANOGRAPHY: PHYSICAL / Hydrodynamic modeling,  NATURAL HAZARDS / Disaster resilience,  GLOBAL CHANGE / Sea level change.|