Flood Resilience Checklist
Why a Flood Resilience Checklist?
As a coastal community, development and land use decisions in Revere must consider the potential impacts and risks of flooding. In 2019, Revere completed the State's Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) planning process and identified developing new development / building requirements to increase resilience as a priority action to address climate change hazards. Click here for Revere’s MVP Plan. Flood risks are changing due to increasing Sea Level Rise (SLR), more intense coastal storms, and increased precipitation (see How Climate Change Impacts Flooding section below).
Note: This Resilience Checklist and Addendum is meant to be an educational tool, please work with an experienced contractor to ensure your property complies with local building code.
Despite the challenges with mapping flood risk, you can use Revere’s existing FEMA flood maps here and maps that show climate change flood projections developed by the MA Office of Coastal Zone Management here. Together, these maps can help you better understand your current and future flood risk. On the statewide map, use the search box to search for “Revere”, or a specific address, to see flood risk, and use the tabs at the top of the Sea Level Rise and Coastal Flood map to explore how risks will change in the coming decades.
What Developers and Property Owners Can Do to Increase Resilience
Whether you're a property owner planning to stay in your home long-term, renting to tenants, or a developer looking to sell, there are several things you can do to protect your property.
How Climate Change Impacts Flooding
Revere is expected to experience an increase in flooding due to Sea Level Rise (SLR), more intense coastal storms, and increased precipitation. Coastal communities across Massachusetts already experience flooding during high tides and extreme weather events including nor'easters and tropical storms. In addition, intense rainstorms can overwhelm municipal drainage systems and cause inland flooding. The frequency and intensity of flooding is increasing due to climate change. The following are flood hazards that Revere is expected to face:
- Sea Level Rise: According to the State website Resilient MA, there will be between 1.4 and 2.4 ft. of sea level rise by 2050 (in the next 30 years) and between 4 ft. and 7.6 ft. of sea level rise by 21 00. The amount of SLR is based on the projected Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions scenarios at intermediate and high levels, which will impact the amount that the ice sheets will melt. SLR is already causing an increase in "sunny day" or "nuisance" flooding in low-lying areas, particularly during king tides (the highest of the high tides associated with the full moon).
- Coastal Storms: Extreme weather events are increasing in frequency and intensity with more severe wind, increased precipitation amounts and rates, and increase wave heights and storm
- Increased Precipitation: Climate projections for the region forecast an increase in average annual rainfall and in the amount of rain falling in large weather In Eastern Massachusetts, annual precipitation has already increased by 10%-15% from historic rainfall averages in the first half of the prior century (1901-1960). Increased rain and snow can overwhelm municipal drainage systems and cause localized flooding and back flow issues. For example, in March of 2010 a series of intense rainstorms releases 17.7 inches of rain over the course of 19 days on mostly frozen ground. These storms were declared a federal disaster, which allowed assistance to be made available to property owners who did not have flood insurance. Nearly 60% of the claims were outside the FEMA SFHA. These types of intense rain events will increase in frequency due to climate change.
For more information:
- Resilient MA: Climate Change Clearinghouse for the Commonwealth
- FEMA's Homeowner's Guide to Retrofitting for Flooding (3rd Edition) (2014) FEMA P-312
- SeaGrant Massachusetts Homeowner's Handbook to Prepare for Coastal Hazards (2020)
- Mass.gov Using Freeboard to Elevate Structures Above Predicted Floodwaters
- Massachusetts Guide on Floodplain Management
- Massachusetts State Building Code