Thursday, April 22, 2010

Flooding Follow-Up

The waters have now receded from the Great Flood of 2010, and as predicted, we are seeing the Bay clear up and bacteria counts drop. Shellfish areas are reopening, and the spring fish runs of herring, striped bass, and menhaden are already well underway.

The lingering impacts of the flood are mostly on people and property, in the form of wrecked homes, ruined water and wastewater infrastructure, and dealing with the costs of repairs and rebuilding.

Shortly after the waters began to recede, Save The Bay called on the Army Corps of Engineers, The US Environmental Protection Agency, and our Congressional Delegation to act- not only on behalf of those people and businesses affected by the flood, but also for the environment.

We urge comprehensive flood management, large-scale ecological restoration, and a fundamental re-thinking of our riverbank and floodplain development practices. Some places probably should not be rebuilt. Other areas would benefit from dam removal or modification, wetlands and riverbank restoration, flood storage, and other techniques to minimize the damage from these kinds of events.

It is still possible to file claims for disaster relief. We encourage all of those municipalities and waterfront land owners to get your claims in ASAP. It is our hope that a significant portion of the Federal flood disaster dollars may be directed to planning and management so that we can make lasting improvements while the lessons are still fresh in our minds. -JT

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