Sharpening the Government’s Blurry Maps ~Al Shaw and Theodoric Meyer, ProPublica
In recent years, Americans have witnessed the destructive power of floods again and again, from the damage inflicted on coastal New York and New Jersey by Hurricane Sandy in 2012 to the devastation wrought by overflowing rivers in Colorado just a few months ago.
Yet as ProPublica has reported, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has flood-risk maps of questionable accuracy for many U.S. counties and lacks maps altogether for some.
This has left property owners in a dangerous state of uncertainty. FEMA’s maps govern whether home and business owners are required to buy flood insurance. They also guide communities’ decisions on where they should — and shouldn’t — allow development. Read More.