Sea gates for inlets to prevent flooding? It’s one idea up for discussion Thursday
Superstorm flood victims will get a chance to voice their concerns during a public meeting Thursday at Stockton University in Galloway with officials from the Army Corps of Engineers and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, who will discuss a feasibility study on coastal storm risk management problems within the back bay area.
Stop FEMA Now Founder George Kasimos will be attending the meeting and said he hopes officials give serious consideration to building sea gates at the Egg Harbor, Barnegat and Manasquan inlets.
"It would cost about $300 million to build sea gates. They only go up when we have a storm for a day, and then they go back down — very little environmental impact," said Kasimos.
About 225,000 people live in the Barnegat Bay Basin, and building the sea gates, Kasimos said, would "create a virtual bathtub" to protect them from future storms as well as sea level rise. Per person, the cost would be about $1,300, according to Kasimos.
Kasimos said with a dune system and sea gates, the Jersey Shore could become protected similarly to the city of New Orleans, "which is literally six or eight feet below sea level — and they're in a bathtub, and they're fully protected, and actually their elevations required by FEMA (have) been lowered."
Kasimos added that elevations in New Jersey would be lowered, meaning less risk of flooding.
"A lot of folks wouldn't have to raise their home and they would save thousands on premiums every year. It's a no-brainer," he said.
Kasimos said he has been in contact with the offices of Rep. Tom MacArthur and Sens. Robert Menendez and Corey Booker about sea gates as a possible solution to back bay flooding.
Thursday's meeting takes place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
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Contact reporter Dianne DeOliveira at Dianne.DeOliveira@townsquaremedia.com.