Volume 9 Issue 1
May 2014


Message from the President


Welcome to the May 2014 edition of the Woods Hole Group Newsletter. Our last edition went out in November, as we all prepared for what turned out to be a long and difficult winter season. We are now welcoming back the osprey and the striped bass, and getting ready for the summer/fall push in business.

This newsletter includes a feature article by Leslie Fields and Elise Leduc on evaluation of the updated Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) for FEMA. In New England, these revised FIRMs resulted in the expansion of the Special Flood Hazard Area (the 100-year flood plain) and the Base Flood Elevations. Many coastal communities and landowners are now included within the flood zone. Insurance rates are also on the rise. Fields and Leduc examine the established methodologies for submitting an appeal to this flood risk characterization and provide information on the site-specific basis for appeal. While there is increased risk in many areas, some places also warrent a closer look. When the FEMA FIRMs determine a legitimate threat to a community at risk for flooding, communities can evaluate climate change impacts and start preparing for mitigation actions.

Clint Hare's Delaware Spotlight profiles the NOAA-centric office that supports the NOAA CO-OPS PORTS network. The major new activity was the installation of the Jacksonville, Florida PORTS network, the second largest behind Chesapeake Bay PORTS. This system consists of eighteen stations along the St. Johns River. Clint also profiles Alexis Crouch, a new hire who will serve as the local operator for the Jacksonville system.

Finally, Dave Szabo, manager of our Houston office, provides an update on the operations and our staff. Primarily tasked with supporting the offshore oil and gas industry, Dave’s team works closely with the engineering teams in Falmouth to develop and deploy systems around the world.

Be sure to review our summary of new hires at Woods Hole Group. They add significantly to our capabilities in science and operations and we are glad to have new people as part of the team.

Submitted By:
Dennis Aubrey

Contact Information:
Woods Hole Group – Falmouth
81 Technology Park Drive
East falmouth, MA 02536
P: 508-540-8080


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