The City of New York has a new Rainfall Ready NYC action plan. Released in July 2022, the action plan includes updated flood maps for city residents and stakeholders. Offices for New York City Mayor Eric Adams, New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Rohit T. Aggarwala, and New York City Emergency Management (NYCEM) Commissioner Zach Iscol collaborated on the initiative. The result is a plan which will help New York residents and investors to protect themselves and their property.
One of the specific aims of the plan is to prepare New Yorkers and the city government for extreme rainfall and the associated flooding risks. Residents can use the maps to check the risk of flooding for their homes and neighbourhoods. This release is part of a new campaign from the Department of Environmental Protection and part of a wider response to climate change in the city.
How NYC Is Preparing for Climate Change
There are several ways that New York City is making investments to prepare for the effects of climate change. The city has already seen changes which include increased rainfall and thus more instances of dangerous flooding. Kizzy Charles-Guzman, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Climate and Environmental Justice, highlighted the importance of initiatives like FloodNet which provide real-time flood data.
Rainfall Ready NYC Action Plan
Bronx Borough President Vanessa L. Gibson praised the Rainfall Ready NYC plan. She explained that the plan will protect low-lying neighbourhoods such as the Bronx, that are vulnerable to flooding during tropical storms.
The plan makes it clear that the fight is for everyone who lives in New York City. It also outlines steps that residents and the city government can take to combat extreme weather and its effects, which include flooding. Some of these steps are:
- Using interactive storm water flood maps to understand flooding in one’s area and creating plans to get to higher ground
- Inspecting high-risk flood areas and cleaning debris from catchment points, curb lines and deploying barriers to protect low areas
- Expanding FloodNet to vulnerable areas for real-time data collection
There needs to be a collaborative effort by all New Yorkers to deal with flooding. As a result, the city will be providing sandbags and flood-barriers to residents in at-risk neighbourhoods. They have also engaged with several partners to create alert systems and strategies. One of these strategies will alert delivery workers of extreme weather and keep them safe.