April 19, 2023

For the Love of Earth: 6 Ways to Invest in Our Planet and Build Flood-Resilient Communities

With flood threats becoming more common and severe, take steps to protect our homes, businesses, and the community.
Virginia Beach Neighborhood Asheville Park

As Earth Day approaches, it's important to consider how we can invest in our planet and make our communities more resilient to natural disasters. With the Flood Protection Program and ongoing stormwater maintenance efforts, the City is doing the work today to help protect communities from the effects of recurrent flooding for future generations.

Here are six ways you can invest in our planet and build a more flood-resilient community:

  1. Know the risks: Understanding your community's flood risk is the first step in becoming more flood resilient. Check out the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) flood maps to determine your risk level. Don’t forget to review the City’s information on “Reading the flood Insurance Rate Map."
  2. Plant rain gardens: Rain gardens are a beautiful way to help absorb excess water during heavy rainfalls. They are also low-maintenance and attract pollinators to your yard.
  3. Improve landscape infiltration: Adding layers of soil and plants to your landscape further helps absorb excess water during heavy rainfalls. It will also slow down the flow of water, giving it time to infiltrate the soil.
  4. Install permeable pavement: Permeable pavement is designed to allow water to infiltrate the surface, reducing runoff and the likelihood of flooding. If you plan to replace or install a driveway or even a walkway, opt to use permeable materials.
  5. Elevate appliances and HVAC systems: If you live in an area that is prone to flooding, consider raising your furnace, water heater, and electrical panel to a higher level. This can prevent costly water damage during a flood.
  6. Get involved: Familiarize yourself with City efforts to invest in flood protection measures such as green infrastructure and improved stormwater systems. Attend city council meetings and voice your concerns about flood risk and protection.

Investing in our planet means investing in our future. By taking steps to become more flood-resilient, we not only protect our homes, businesses, and communities, but we also help to create a more sustainable and resilient future for everyone. Learn more about the Virginia Beach Flood Protection Program at virginiabeach.gov/RippleEffect.

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