According to recently published research by Rebuild by Design, New Jersey is the third most vulnerable state in the country when it comes to weather-related disasters.
There were 13 official disaster areas in Garden State over the decade between 2011 and 2021, and inhabitants there experienced an average of $815 in weather-related damages per person. This put New Jersey in third place, behind only New York and Louisiana.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) post-disaster help payments were among the many variables examined in the study (HUD).
The research highlighted Ocean County as a high-risk area due to its population concentration, relatively flat topography, and abundance of environmentally hazardous sites classified as Superfund sites.
The report found that Ocean County had the highest “compounding risks,” which combine social factors like population density, growth, and age distribution with physical risks like sea level rise and the prevalence of tropical systems and nor’easters.
From 2011 through 2021, the federal government declared disasters in Ocean County and five other counties.
Over a decade, Ocean County received a total of $283.96 million in FEMA funding for natural disasters like Hurricane Irene, Superstorm Sandy, and significant snowfall.
Despite having the highest concentration of coastal properties in the state, Lakewood, Ocean County’s largest municipality, is actually located far inland and has no direct access to the water.
HUD commissioned the Rebuild by Design report after Sandy. The non-profit organization Rebuild By Design investigates climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies.
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