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NYC MAYOR De Blasio Pours $100 Million Into Downtown Flood Prevention

An additional $100 million is being added to the New York City flood prevention fund for lower Manhattan. Mayor de Blasio announced two weeks ago that the funds will be added to the $15 million that was earmarked back in March as part of the first-phase flood protection design.

The city already has a $20 billion resiliency plan that is being put into action in all five boroughs and includes other plans such as the East Side Coastal Resiliency Project . The money is part of the disaster prevention program that is being overseen by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s National Disaster Resilience Competition, which has a $500 million fund for disaster prevention.

As of March, 2015, many boiler rooms in New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) apartments still hadn’t been flood-proofed, which pushed FEMA to grant $3 billion for 33 NYCHA developments, the largest grant the federal agency has ever made.

The widespread devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy in 2012 affected more than 60,000 NYCHA residents. Among the many organizations that are working with the city are the Trust for Public Land, Columbia and Drexel Universities, who are planning green infrastructure improvements along the coastal areas of the city. These plans include playgrounds, parks, and land-conservation sites as buffers against flooding.

Last October, 4.15 million cubic yards of sand had been added to beaches across the city, and 26,000 linear feet of dunes had been packed on Staten Island. 10,500 linear feet of bulkhead repairs had been made city-wide. In February, 2015, the New York City Panel on Climate Change reported that the sea level in NYC will rise between 11 inches and 21 inches by the 2050s, between 18 and 29 inches by the 2080s, and between 22 and 50 inches by 2100.

In May, 2015, Mayor de Blasio marked Earth Day by releasing the city’s new sustainability plan: “OneNYC ” – short for “One New York: The Plan for a Strong and Just City.” This detailed and comprehensive plan not only focuses on preparing for the impacts of climate change, but also pledges a program to tackle social and economic inequality. The plan was in large part guided by the Climate Change 2015 Report, issued in February by New York City Panel on Climate Change (NPCC).

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