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Flood Mitigation and Resiliency

Information for all audiences regarding activities that helps communities and property owners to mitigate flood risk and make areas more resilient to flooding.

Flood Mitigation

Mitigation is the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. Mitigation is taking action now—before the next disaster—to reduce human and financial consequences later (analyzing risk, reducing risk, insuring against risk).

Effective mitigation requires that we all understand local risks, address the hard choices, and invest in long-term community well-being. Without mitigation actions, we jeopardize our safety, financial security, and self-reliance.

Hazard mitigation also makes good sense financially. The National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) is examining the benefits and costs of disaster mitigation measures, including for floods, in a multi-year study. In their 2018 interim report Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves pdf file, NIBS looked at benefits of designing buildings to meet the 2018 International Residential Code (IRC) and the 2018 International Building Code (IBC). The project team’s research and analysis showed that “for flood resistance, incorporating at least one foot of freeboard into the elevation requirements to comply with the 2018 I-Codes saved $6 for every $1 invested.” The NH State Building Code currently adheres to 2009 I-Code standards.

Learn more about flood hazard mitigation using the resources below.

Flood Resiliency

FEMA Community Rating System

The Community Rating System (CRS) is a voluntary incentive program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that an NFIP community in good standing can apply to join and actively participate. A community that conducts floodplain management activities that exceed the NFIP minimum requirements can earn points for each activity. The number of points a community accumulates decides what percent discount some of their residents and businesses will receive on their annual flood insurance premiums.

NH Silver Jackets Team

The Silver Jackets Team in New Hampshire is a team of individuals from both federal and state agencies that focuses on New Hampshire’s flood risk management priorities and provide technical expertise and resources in the development of solutions and projects when possible. The New Hampshire team’s interagency agreement was finalized in January 2015.

In 2019, the team released the Flood Hazards Handbook for Municipal Officials, a publication designed to help NH communities prepare for, respond to, and recover from floods. It includes guidance, best practices, and information about available federal and state resources organized into situation-specific sections: Before the Flood, During the Flood, and After the Flood. Also included is a customizable Flood Response and Recovery Checklist that can be used by municipal officials to identify and manage priority activities when a flood does happen. The handbook is available for download from the NH Silver Jackets website.

Association of State Floodplain Managers

The Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM) began in 1977 as the supporting organization of professionals involved in floodplain management, flood hazard mitigation, flood preparedness and flood warning and recovery. Its mission is to mitigate the losses, costs and human sufferings caused by flooding, and promote wise use of the natural and beneficial floodplain functions. Today ASFPM is the premier voice in floodplain management practice and policy throughout the nation. ASFPM’s influence is expressed through policy and practice changes that impact floodplain management in the U.S. and internationally.

Examples of ASFPM Publications:

Portable Document Format Symbol Portable Document Format (.pdf). Visit nh.gov for a list of free .pdf readers for a variety of operating systems.

NH Office of Strategic Initiatives
Governor Hugh J. Gallen State Office Park
Johnson Hall, 3rd Floor  |  107 Pleasant Street  |  Concord, NH 03301
(603) 271-2155  |  fax: (603) 271-2615