New Flood Risk Identified By FIU Researcher - Florida Climate Institute

201712fiu-flood.jpgDecember 13, 2017 (Source: FIU) - South Florida raises groundwater levels to fight salt water intrusion, the threat of flooding from within will only increase, according to FIU research. Current groundwater levels in South Florida are a major contributor to inland flood damages, especially during the wet season or extreme rain events. Traditional flood models account for drainage systems, rivers, streams and canals but do not account for the groundwater beneath our feet. FIU hydrologist Michael Sukop has released a model that focuses on South Florida’s groundwater as a cause of flooding. “Many current flood models treat the land as an impermeable surface when, in fact, South Florida’s land surface is highly permeable and the water table is very close to the surface,” said Sukop, a professor in FIU’s Department of Earth and Environment. “Our model offers a different way of understanding and addressing the flooding problem. When it rains hard enough, or when tides are high, the water table can come all the way to the surface and cause flooding.”

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Science of The Total Environment Journal Article