With the updates to the FEMA maps we have spent an inordinate amount of time looking at the impacts of a 1% storm on the town. The Union of Concerned Scientist have put forward a new, perhaps more insightful, analysis.
As discussed in, // Sea Level Rise Making Floods Routine for Coastal Cities, there are many properties at risk from just slightly higher tides than our average high tides today. Below are a few highlights and links for different parts of town included in their review. I am focusing, for the intent of this post, on the seemingly insignificant one foot increase in tides.
In West Dennis a one foot increase in tides will place 16 housing units at risk of impacts during routine high tide events. At first I scratched my head on this one, then I thought about the extent of the rack lines along many of the waterfront beaches. Given some of these come almost up to the outer reaches of the most coastal oriented properties, it is not so hard to believe that a slightly higher tide will reach out and touch them.
I have been on the beach during a few recent storm events in Dennis Port I was actually surprised by how few were considered at risk (6 homes). Perhaps the cottages at Camper’s Haven were not included. However, the rack lines near Metcalf Beach and elsewhere clearly shows tides lapping at the pilings for many decks along this coastline.
The final area looked at is the coastal areas in the Dennis Village pat of town. Here, eight homes are considered at risk from just a one foot increase in tides. More likely these homes are in the low lying areas along Chase Garden Creek. However, nearly all of the Aquaculture Research Center property would be regularly inundated at high tide.
I have stated many times over the past several months, homeowners in Dennis need to think about how they prepare for future flooding, both from 1% storms and from sea level rise in general. Perhaps the 30 homes most immediately in harms way have already thought about this, but everyone within a flood zone, should be thinking about elevating their homes.