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Threat of Rising Sea Levels - 8/9/16

The recent devastation in historic and beautiful Ellicott City, Maryland has helped to refocus attention locally on issues related to storm water management and the damage water can do.  While there remain many skeptics regarding global warming, a growing number of analysts suggest that the economic damage from rising sea levels could be massive. 

According to a new report from real estate website Zillow, rising sea levels could cost homeowners nearly nine hundred billion dollars.  As reported by Bloomberg, this research takes its initial cue from the journal Nature, which in March determined that sea levels could rise more than six feet by the end of the current century. 

Under that scenario, Florida could lose nearly one million homes, or roughly one in eight homes.  That translates into a four hundred billion loss, and that figure does not include losses to commercial buildings or public infrastructure. 

After Florida, the nine states that stand to lose the most residential real estate value to rising seas are New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, California, South Carolina, Hawaii, North Carolina, Maryland and Virginia.   

Anirban Basu, Chariman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants. Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes. Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.