Fourth National Climate Assessment

NCA4 Web Site

Coastal Economies and Property Are Already at Risk

America’s trillion-dollar coastal property market and public infrastructure are threatened by the ongoing increase in the frequency, depth, and extent of tidal flooding due to sea level rise, with cascading impacts to the larger economy. Higher storm surges due to sea level rise and the increased probability of heavy precipitation events exacerbate the risk. Under a higher scenario (RCP8.5), many coastal communities will be transformed by the latter part of this century, and even under lower scenarios (RCP4.5 or RCP2.6), many individuals and communities will suffer financial impacts as chronic high tide flooding leads to higher costs and lower property values. Actions to plan for and adapt to more frequent, widespread, and severe coastal flooding would decrease direct losses and cascading economic impacts.