In a 30-year timeframe, there is a 26% chance of a 100-year flood event.

Yes, you read that correctly.

A 100-year flood is NOT a flood that happens only once in 100 years. It is a flood that has a 1% chance of happening in each and every year.

Why do we care? Climate change is not solely about coastal flooding, though that does affect the entire Hudson Valley up to Troy, NY as well as all of NY city. It is also about aberrant storm events including an increase in frequency and an increase in rainfall at each event. New York will get wetter in climate change projection models. Wetter means more potential flooding even in land-bound sites as well as greater humidity and mold risks related to humidity.

What will happen in your part of the USA? How are other countries affected by changes in precipitation and temperature? Higher temperatures mean more capacity to hold moisture, and when there is a cooling trend, there will be more rain or snow. We just saw horrific death tolls and 40,000 homes destroyed in China. This flooding in China and Pakistan affected not only homes but farmland, in turn affecting a much greater area of the world.Think globally, act locally.

Check out the newly released New York Climate Science Clearinghouse to see and access many NY state specific climate projection models addressing sea level rise, rain events and temperature profiles. There are linkages here also to some regional tools. Learn about the future of your state, as climate should directly inform our building designs and construction approaches. Be wise, be informed and be pro-active. Find the opportunities for excellence while you protect your buildings and occupants from risks inherent in our more volatile climate present and future.

Be safe, be well, be greener…


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