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Florida Faces Greater Flood Risk Than All Other States

Florida Flood Insurance

Florida faces more risk of flooding than any other state. This was the finding of a report funded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other members of the Risky Business initiative, founded to assess and increase public awareness of the economic risks to the U.S. due to climate change. The report, “The Economic Risks of Climate Change in the United States”, identifies the economic risks posed by climate changes. According to the report, the U.S. will face the effects of climate change including rising oceans and more frequent periods of extreme heat, both of which will affect Florida dramatically.

“Damages from flooding, storms and heat waves are already costing billions of dollars” states Bloomberg. “We saw that firsthand in New York City with Hurricane Sandy. With the oceans rising and the climate changing, the Risky Business report details the costs in ways that are easy to understand – dollars and cents – and impossible to ignore.” ~ Michael R. Bloomberg

Rising ocean levels and greater coastal storm damage already threatens the financial value of many properties along the Eastern Seaboard and Gulf Coast. Some homes and commercial properties in Florida and other Southeastern states could be underwater in the next 2-3 decades.

The Risky Business study found that additional projected sea level rise will likely increase average annual property losses due to hurricanes and flooding by $6 billion to $11 billion in the next century. The projected sea level rise could threaten Florida’s coastal infrastructure. Cities, such as Miami that are built on porous limestone, are especially at risk. Greater flooding due to hurricanes and other coastal storms pose a significant and immediate economic risk.

The potential loss due to flooding is substantial. Between $15 billion and $23 billion of existing property is expected to be underwater by 2050. Critical infrastructure, such as roads, bridges, electricity and utilities will be compromised just as the state’s need for them is growing.

As with any risk assessment, it’s important to consider potential events and not just likely scenarios.  Flood insurance is something Florida households and businesses should pay a premium for to protect themselves against a wide range of flooding possibilities. Over time, flooding due to hurricanes and other storms will become “the new normal” warns the Risky Business report.

Storm surges place Floridians at a very high risk for flooding. Densely populated South Florida is increasingly vulnerable to storm surge flooding. According to the Miami Herald, “2.4 million people and 1.3 million homes” are dangerously close to the local high-tide line.

The risks Florida homeowners – and business owners – face today are dramatically different than they were a few years ago. Lanier Upshaw, Inc. specializes in helping Florida residents – both homeowners and businesses – assess their risk for flooding and other damaging circumstances. Our trained experts will help you explore your risks and select the right policy for you. To learn more about how Lanier Upshaw, Inc. can help you cover your risks, contact us here.