We learned a difficult lesson 4 years ago when Superstorm Sandy slammed into the Jersey Shore. And a new report out this week puts into perspective just how vulnerable a number of Ocean County communities are to major permanent flooding.

Yes, permanent.

The Regional Plan Association, a tri-state agency that studies the growth of the New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut metropolitan areas, put out a report on Monday titled, "Under Water: How Sea Level Rise Threatens the Tri-State Region".

In the report, the agency makes it clear that even a one foot rise in sea levels could have a devastating impact on Ocean County communities, saying that:

the Jersey Shore is particularly vulnerable to permanent flooding, with much of the initial inundation in communities that line its back bays, tidal rivers and estuaries. Particularly affected are the Ocean County communities around Barnegat Bay and Toms River, where over 3,000 of today’s residents live in places that could be inundated.

When they expand the predictions to a six foot rise in water, they point out that over 80,000 people in Ocean County could be impacted.

It's pretty scary when you think about the seriousness of the phrase "permanent flooding", and even more so when the report points out that this is a very real possibility within the next 15 years.

The report goes on to discuss how these same conditions could impact North Jersey, New York, and Connecticut, and also discusses what can be done to avoid these widespread natural disasters.

You can check out the whole report from the Regional Plan Association by clicking here.


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