Publications

Chesterfield Heights Design Challenge

Wetlands Watch collaborated with students from Hampton University and Old Dominion to develop resiliency designs for the historic shoreline neighborhood of Chesterfield Heights in Norfolk, VA. Student designs were made part of the region's proposal for the Department of Housing and Urban Development's National Disaster Resilience Competition, and at the beginning of 2016, designs based on the students' work won a $120 million grant for the state of Virginia. Most of the HUD funding- $115 million will be put on the ground in Chesterfield Heights to implement those ideas. More info on our blog.

 

Flood Protection Pay-Offs: A Local Government Guide to the Community Rating System

A study on how communities can take extra steps to deal with flooding/sea level rise, reduce their flood insurance costs, and increase open space and shoreline habitat.

With premiums increasing for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) we looked for ways to help communities support flood proofing and habitat protection at the same time. The NFIP rewards communities for taking flood protection steps above the minimum, by using the Community Rating System to evaluate floodproofing and award points toward reduced premium costs.

 

The Challenge of Mitigating Virginia's Flooding and Sea Level Rise Impacts

Flood mitigation and sea level rise adaptation needs are growing, and homeowners with damaged properties are facing an unacceptable wait time for help. Our analysis of five cities within Hampton Roads found nearly $431,000,000 in pending costs to fix flood-damaged structures. At current payment rates for government assistance, these folks will wait between 78 and 188 years for help! We also examine the options available to deal with this backlog, including innovative revolving loan funds at the state and regional level.

 

Homeowners Insurance Changes in Coastal Virginia: Causes and Consequences for Shoreline Communities

Homeowners insurance along the coast is increasingly expensive and undergoing rapid changes in coverage and availability. Our study looks at whether or not these changes are a response of insurance companies to the concern about increased coastal risks due to human induced climate change, and the potential for these increasing premiums to be used to encourage people to adapt to climate change.

 

Reducing Nutrients on Private Property: Evaluation of Programs, Practices, and Incentives

Wetlands Watch released a study on conservation landscaping needs in Virginia. We saw the use of conservation landscaping as a way to meet nutrient and sediment pollution reduction goals through habitat restoration and creation - efforts that are getting shoved to the side in the urgency to meet pollution reduction standards.

 

Policy Updates

Congressional Impacts to the National Flood Insurance Program & Hazard Mitigation Programs

An analysis of the considerations of proposed federal budget cuts to FEMA floodplain management programs and hazard mitigation grant programs. This document also reviews the important elements of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is scheduled for re-authorization in fall 2017.  

 

FEMA Hazard Mitigation Programs FY15 Policy Updates

 

Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (HFIAA): Summary of April 1, 2016 Changes

 

Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (HFIAA): Summary of April 1, 2015 Changes

 

White Papers

Needed Reform: The CRS Program & Nature-Based Flood Reduction Activities

 

Hampton Roads As A Center of Economic Activity for Sea Level Rise Adaptation