Ocean City Flooding Making a Splash in the News

Category: Ocean City, NJ

Photo courtesy of Suzanne Hornick

Ocean City Flooding, a flood group established to unite residents and property owners concerned about flooding and to coordinate efforts related to flood mitigation, continues to garner attention from local news outlets related to its efforts. In a Science Nature article from June 18th, Ocean City is mentioned as topping the list of New Jersey coastal towns with large numbers of properties projected to face chronic high-tide flooding by 2045. The article highlights findings from a study by the Union of Concerned Scientists: Underwater: Rising seas, Chronic Floods, and the Implications for US Coastal Real Estate (2018). The study indicates profound impacts from chronic flooding to real estate across the country and implications to coastal residents, communities and the economy. Suzanne Hornick, founder and chair of OC Flooding, is quoted throughout the article, mentioning the work with TEX science liaison, Tom Herrington, out of Monmouth University. Drawing on lessons learned from her collaboration with Tom, Suzanne mentions that the city’s remediation plans are limited in scope—”a Band-Aid on an amputation”. She goes on to urge the need for both short-term and long-term approaches to flooding remediation island-wide.

Another article in the Ocean City Sentinel, describes a recent field trip to tour living shorelines with the OC Flooding group, Tom Herrington, and staff from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Living shorelines are natural and nature-based features such as rocks, sand, and native plantings used as alternatives to hardened infrastructure such as bulkheads. Living shorelines develop over time to provide a natural approach to flood mitigation and provide habitat for flora and fauna. These improved shorelines help stabilize banks, provide a buffer from tidal surge and assist with stormwater management. Suzanne Hornick is again quoted throughout the article describing the group’s interest in incorporating these types of approaches into the remediation efforts across the island. They are hoping to garner attention from their city council to consider these approaches in future planning.

Sarah Wilkins editor