Concurrent Technical Session 3 | October 25, 2018 11:00 am

CONCURRENT SESSION 3
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2018   |   11:00 am

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TRACK 1   |   FLOOD HAZARD ID AND MAPPING
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: PE, CO, PP]

Title: NAVD 88 No More: A Modernized Vertical Datum for the Future
Presented by:
Christine Gallagher  |  NOAA National Geodetic Survey

Abstract:

Flood hazard identification and mapping relies upon vertically-referenced digital elevation models (DEMs) and hydrologic models that use consistent vertical datums to ensure correct alignment and risk assessment. Federal mapping agencies reference their spatial data products to the National Spatial Reference System (NSRS), which will include an improved vertical datum in 2022. This presentation provides a preview of the North American-Pacific Geopotential Datum of 2022 (NAPGD2022) that will replace NAVD88, and what this change will mean for the National Flood Insurance Program. We introduce how NAPGD2022 is defined, how it will be accessed by surveyors and other geospatial professionals, how it is relates to tidal datums, and ways that it will enhance flood mapping activities.

This presentation will also give a brief overview of the planned transition to new reference frames, information about tools to aid in transforming geospatial data from NAVD 88, and other educational resources related to datums and elevations. NGS already provides free tools to submit GPS data and compute elevations, whether needed to complete an elevation certificate or quality assurance for DEM data collections, such as lidar. All the data that NGS collects, as well as some of the data collected by its partners, is available online through map services and databases including geodetic control, topo-bathy lidar and aerial imagery. The modernization of our Nation’s vertical reference surface will present new opportunities for accurate mapping in coastal areas that are undergoing vertical motion, allowing for floodplain maps that communicate risk more effectively. The National Geodetic Survey is working with FEMA to prepare for modernizing vertical datum guidance in preparation for the changes in 2022.

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Title: Modeling Coastal and Riverine Flooding in Estuaries
Presented by:
Michel Boufadel, PhD  |  Center for Natural Resources
Hamed Behzad  |  Civil Engineering PhD Student

Abstract:

Modeling coastal flooding has evolved separately from the modeling of inland flooding, which presents a challenge for modeling flooding in estuaries. Engineering-type models have relied on modeling the extreme values; for coastal flooding, this is typically modeled in the CHAMP model, and for inland flooding, this is typically modeled using the HECRAS model. However, there is not a clear framework for combining the two or to use information from one (namely inland modeling) to address coastal flooding.

We consider flooding in two estuaries, Barnegat Bay and the Toms River, and Raritan Bay and the Cheesquake Creek, and we evaluate the extent of inland flooding, coastal flooding, and a combination of the two. We used for coastal flooding the DHI model MIKE21 and we used HECRAS for inland flooding. We summarize the results and we present guidelines for an integrated framework for modeling flooding in estuaries that captures critical elements of coastal flooding and inland flooding.

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Title: A Rapid Assessment of Dam Inventory:  Lessons Learned from Two Category 4 Hurricanes Impacting Puerto Rico
Presented by:
Curtis Smith  |  Stantec
Shudipto Rahman  |  FEMA Region II

Abstract:

Nearly 70 percent of the dams in the US were built prior to 1975. Since that time, the engineering and statistical means for predicting design storms (i.e., rainfall, hydrology, and hydraulic routing) have changed drastically. It’s alarming to consider just how many dams may not be expected to withstand the extreme weather events of today given the catastrophic damage and loss of life that can occur from just one dam failure. Moreover, the condition of the dams throughout the nation is rated “D” on a scorecard from “A-F” by ASCE. In Puerto Rico, the average age of the dam inventory is over 60 years old. In early September 2017, when Hurricane Irma and Maria made landfall in quick succession, 36 dams spread across the island became 36 potential areas for disaster. The heavy rainfall from these two category 4 hurricanes covered vast expanses of the island and brought forth a new challenge to emergency managers: where do you focus response efforts and resources when there are so many areas at risk at once?

Our presentation will review how FEMA Region II applied a rapid assessment and comparison of the 36 dams in PR during Hurricane Irma and Maria. With very little real-time information or accessibility during and after the storms, a new approach was formed by reviewing an existing network of data, analyzing dam breaches in DSS-WISE, and performing rapid assessments of inspection reports that was ultimately used to focus attention and resources during the disaster response.

 

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TRACK 2   |   CLIMATE CHANGE
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: PP]

Title: Underwater: Rising Seas, Chronic Floods, and the Implications for US Coastal Real Estate
Presented by:
Shana Udvardy  |   Union of Concerned Scientists

Abstract:

The Union of Concerned Scientists examined the impact of worsening tidal flooding caused by sea level rise on coastal real estate in the lower 48 states. UCS found that as many as 311,000 coastal homes with a collective market value of about $117.5 billion today are at risk of chronic flooding within the next 30 years—the lifespan of a typical mortgage. Roughly 14,000 coastal commercial properties assessed at a value of nearly $18 billion also are at risk during that timeframe. By the end of the century, homes and commercial properties currently worth more than $1 trillion could be at risk. We used property data and our own peer-reviewed methodology for estimating chronic flooding risk. UCS will speak to the number of coastal properties at risk of chronic inundation, the present-day value of these properties at the zip code level, and their current contribution to the property tax base with a focus on the state of New Jersey. We will also present our mapping tool and solutions to underscore that there is hope. For example, if the global community takes bold action to adhere to the goals of the Paris Agreement of capping warming below 2°C and land-based ice loss is limited, our analysis finds that by the year 2060 the number of homes at risk of chronic inundation would be reduced by nearly 80 percent.

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Title: Credit Downgrade Threat as a Non-regulatory Driver for Flood Risk Mitigation and Sea Level Rise Adaptation
Presented by:
John Miller

Abstract:

Federal policies and regulations with higher standards that respond to flood risk and sea level rise are being rolled back by the current administration. In that void, the threat of credit rating downgrades is expected to be a developing non-regulatory driver to future risk planning and adaptation. Several exposed communities have been downgraded due, in part, to their lost tax base from major disasters. As sea level rise manifests along the coasts, reducing property value, impacts on revenue will present new challenges in servicing debt. Credit rating agencies in the last few years have issued publications giving some notice on how climate change is to be considered in municipal credit ratings. Proactive communities, conducting planning and realizing adaptation practices in the present are likely to be spared the need to increase revenues to counter the higher borrowing costs that are coincident with a bond rating downgrade, due to likely loss of taxable properties, caused by sea level rise in the future. Municipalities that do not engage now in addressing the threats associated with climate change may have to increase taxes to offset the increased bond return demanded by investors.

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Title: A Flood Assessment for the Future
Presented by:
Christiana Pollack, GISP, CFM  |  Princeton Hydro, LLC
Jessica Jahre, PP, AICP, CFM  |  NJDEP

Abstract:

Princeton Hydro performed a flood assessment and flood mitigation analysis in the Lower Moodna Creek Watershed, which is a subwatershed within the Greater Moodna Creek Watershed. The Greater Moodna Creek Watershed captures drainage from 180 square miles in eastern Orange County, New York. It includes 22 municipalities and hundreds of streams. Moodna Creek is a tributary to the Hudson River and is tidally influenced at its most downstream extent. As a result of the many streams and creeks that flow through this watershed, the lower extent of Moodna Creek is prone to high velocity flows and flooding during high rainfall. This project identified areas within Lower Moodna Creek Watershed that flood frequently, areas that may be susceptible to damage from large rain events, and areas where additional problems may surface as climate and watershed conditions change over time. Princeton Hydro modeled flooding within the watershed during normal rain events, extreme rain events, and future rain events, as a result of climate change. The project assessed the facilities, infrastructure, and urban development that are at risk from flooding, and developed a series of hydrologic and hydraulic models to assess the extent of potential flooding from the 10-year, 100-year, and 500-year storm recurrence intervals. With an understanding of how flooding may occur under future conditions, Princeton Hydro evaluated structural and non-structural strategies to mitigate potential flooding. The modeling included flows for these storm events under existing conditions and also with predicted increases in precipitation and population growth. The project team used these models to evaluate several measures that may reduce existing and anticipated flood risk. The proposed solutions prioritized approaches that protect and/or mirror natural flood protection mechanisms within the watershed such as floodplain reconnection and wetland establishment. Attendees will learn the methods used to model future hydrology, how to update mapped floodplains under future conditions, and how to interpret the changes to flood risk. Attendees will walk away understanding some of the strategies available to minimize future flood risk in watersheds and how to analyze the success, or failure, of those strategies to aid in project prioritization.


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TRACK 3   |   FLOOD MITIGATION
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: PE, CO, PP]

Title: Statewide Riverine & Coastal Roundtable on Successes, Challenges & Aspirations
Presented by:
Caleb Stratton  |  City of Hoboken
Heather Vitz-Del Rio, P.E.  |  Township of Wayne
Andrea L. Bierwirth MPA, CFM  |  Borough of Manville

Abstract:

Rarely, can we have frank conversation about successes, challenges or aspirations. We’re looking to present a broad state of the NJ practice in different coastal and riverine environments that are governed by different land use, density and politics. Rather than doing a traditional slide presentation, this discussion format would allow for the panelists to review some of their successful flood mitigation projects or policies and the key factors that led to those successes, but then really focus on the challenges, how they overcame some challenges, and which challenges persist or lie ahead. Are there consistent themes we can draw across the State? What are some of the trends we are seeing – are there opportunities for collaboration or improvement across municipalities? What are emerging or controversial topics in floodplain administration? This roundtable will be more conversational, with potential for frequent engagement from the audience. We can solicit questions from NJAFM members preceding the conference or solicit questions from the Board. Either way, this session is designed to invoke a lively & spirited conversation.

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TRACK 4   |   EDUCATION AND OUTREACH
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: CO, PP ]

Title Engaging Art to Promote Disaster Risk Reduction
Presented by:
Jack Heide, AICP, CFM  |  FEMA

Abstract:

Can you use the words art and hazard mitigation in the same sentence? Hazard Mitigation Planners are used to planning to protect hard assets and infrastructure. But how does one plan to protect intangible cultural heritage, the artistic expression of what it means to be human? How does the federal government protect cultural resources, including the fruit of artistic expression? It all begins with the acknowledgment of the arts as an integral and necessary component of our communities. A vibrant arts sector contributes to the health and welfare of a community in the best of times. And in the wake of a disaster, art can offer comfort and connection, helping a community heal, move forward, and become more resilient. Finally, how is FEMA using the Artists and the Arts Community in our risk communication and messaging for disaster risk reduction?

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Title: Multifaceted Collaboration for Enhancing Resilience
Presented by:
Susan Marticek  |  Compass 82

Abstract:

The hallmark of Compass 82’s success is comprised of multifaceted collaboration for enhancing resilience, tactical maximization of limited resources, incorporation of knowledge and experience from prior disasters, and the aptitude for consistently improving service delivery and outcomes which benefit all. Compass 82 is built on three core pillars of service to be deployed following a disaster: Insurance Claims Adjusting Two of the most common experiences for disaster survivors are feeling unaware of which next steps to take after calling to notify their insurance company of their loss and then being underpaid by their insurance company. Compass 82’s unique approach to insurance adjusting pairs an experienced Disaster Recovery Specialist from our team with an Independent Adjuster to provide the necessary expertise for maximizing insurance payouts and utilizing those funds efficiently and effectively. This team manages and tracks the insurance claim while maintaining contact with the policyholder, offering insights on best practices and updates on resources. Education Immediately following a disaster, community members should not be expected to know how to navigate all of the recovery systems that will be introduced to them.

Compass 82 has developed a series of workshops for survivors and trainings for professionals so all impacted and those who wish to work toward recovery are aware of how to navigate the road ahead of them. Compass 82 will deploy to the impacted community to address: Construction professionals’ needs to understand how to interact with recovery grants and loans Homeowners’ needs to understand how to spot an insufficient contract Volunteer group needs to understand that their relief efforts can complicate a homeowner’s recovery if done without foresight Recovery Solutions Compass 82 recognizes the requisite need for systems to adapt to the ever-changing climate of disaster recovery. We strive to find creative and collaborative solutions to the inevitable obstacles faced by survivors and the organizations designed to assist them. Our program development and project management services are available to assist non-profit, business, and governmental partners in their efforts to support disaster impacted communities.

 

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TRACK 5   |   FLOOD MODELING
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: PE]

Title: A Flood Resiliency Case Study in Orange County, New York
Presented by:
Greg Shaffer  |  WSP USA

Abstract:

Hurricane Irene hit the East Coast in late August 2011, causing extensive flooding and resulting in millions of dollars in damages. The New York Rising Community Reconstruction Program, announced in April 2013, is a $700 million planning and implementation program that provides rebuilding and resiliency assistance to communities in New York State severely damaged by Hurricane Irene. As part of this program, a drainage master plan was developed for several flood-prone communities in Orange County, NY to accurately understand flood risks and propose mitigation measures.

To assess local flood risks, an integrated hydrologic and hydraulic model was developed. This model used an innovative 1D/2D approach coupled with geographic information system (GIS) resources and incorporated climate change projections to assess future flood risk. The model enabled the identification and analysis of the best flood mitigation projects. Design storms ranging from the 2-year to the 100-year rainfall event were used to determine the drainage needs of the community.

A comprehensive project prioritization was completed to assess the financial feasibility of each Proposed Project and determine a project ranking. Our prioritization framework uses a financial analysis, a non-financial analysis and a multi-criteria analysis to comprehensively evaluate the benefits of the proposed flood mitigation projects. To evaluate the cost effectiveness of the proposed flood mitigation projects, Benefit-Cost Analysis (BCA) is performed for each project.

Using the results of the quantitative and qualitative evaluations, the project prioritization was developed to highlight the most beneficial projects. The proposed projects and the methodology used to identify, develop, and prioritize these projects will be presented.

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Title: USACE Green Brook Flood Risk Management Project Segments B3 and C2 & H
Presented by:
Thomas R. Decker, PE  |  Jacobs Engineering Group

Abstract:

The overall Green Brook basin encompasses sixty-five square miles within the State of New Jersey in the counties of Somerset, Middlesex and Union, and incorporates the Green Brook sub-basin of the Raritan River Basin. The Green Brook Flood Risk Management project has been divided into a number of segments and sub-segments which are being designed and constructed as funding permits. The overall program that once complete will provide flood protection to the adjacent residential neighborhoods and commercial properties that have experienced flooding and associated damages to their properties over the years.
Jacobs Engineering Group will present an overview of Segments B3 and C2 & H will be presented related to modeling and permitting.

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Title: Regional Calibration of the Peak Flow Coefficient for the NRCS Dimensionless Unit Hydrograph Equation for the State of New Jersey
Presented by:
Michael Horst, PE, PhD  |  The College of New Jersey

 

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TRACK 6   |   STANDARDS AND REGULATIONS
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: PECO]

Title: Flood Hazard Area Mapping and Permitting for PSE&G DP&C Projects
Presented by:
Gene Rotonda  |  PSE&G

Abstract:

We all know what happened shortly thereafter on October 22, 2012 “Super Storm Sandy”. Subsequent permitting has been complicated by changing regulations, mapping and how fluvial and tidal floodplains have been defined.

NJDEP Flood Hazard Area Mapping and Permitting is required for all Tidal and Fluvial Floodplain areas with tributary drainage areas over 50-acres. The NJDEP allows Flood Hazard Area verifications by referencing available mapping in both of these floodplain areas. PSE&G DP&C continues to permit “Energy Strong 1″, ‘Energy Strong 2” and other Storm Hardening projects within these NJDEP regulated Flood Hazard Areas.

Recent changes in the definition of “tidal” and “fluvial” floodplains have subsequently required prior “tidal” areas to be classified as “fluvial”. These areas are influenced by the tide by their flood elevations are governed by fluvial conditions. Mapping the New Jersey Flood Hazard Area Design Storm Flood Elevation “NJFHADFE” in fluvial floodplains requires checking multiple maps, profiles, sections as well as expertise in evaluating Floodplains. This is a cumbersome process that relies on the “highest” elevation as the NJFHADFE despite the age or accuracy of the studies and mapping being referenced. This creates net fill hardships for many of our sites that were previously defined as tidal and requiring no net fill.

This presentation will expand upon the permit and rule changes and highlight examples of how PSE&G permitting has complied with the regulations to insure resilient energy strong projects.

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Title: Challenges of Avoiding Perceived Conflicts of Interest with Building Permits
Presented by:
Jack Flood, VP  |   Spatial Data Logic

Abstract:

Municipal officials interested in personal home or property improvement face many obstacles beyond those faced by members of the public. While no one questions the motives or wisdom behind avoiding perceived conflicts of interest, real-life implementation can be a minefield for department officials as well as affected municipal officials. SDL’s Jack Flood will discuss techniques for dealing with:

· Identifying those who are obliged to apply to “conflict-of-interest partners”
· Do’s and don’ts on the part of the initial municipal contact within a construction department
· Challenges in establishing the reciprocal compliance relationship between municipalities
(Paperwork and forms (e.g. differing fee schedules)
· Lack of relevant information (e.g. GIS maps) available to conflict-of-interest partners
· Sharing information between municipal and departmental boundaries (e.g. between the
Construction Department in Town A and Zoning in Town B)
· Enforcement by a conflict-of-interest partner
· Information Inheritance (e.g. when a property is sold)
· Electronically “Packaging” relevant data for delivery

 

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TRACK 7   |   TRAINING
[CREDITS AVAILABLE: PE]

Title: Overview of NJ Flood Hazard Area Control Act and Implementing Regulations
Presented by:
Vince Mazzei, PE  |  NJDEP, Division of Land Use Regulation