Jan 20, 2016

Blizzard storm surge could rival an East Coast hurricane landfall

New York, NY
Washington, DC
Philadelphia, PA
New Jersey
USA
by
Eric Holthaus
,
Slate
A couple looks at the view of New Jersey from Battery Park in Lower Manhattan on Aug. 28, 2011, as Hurricane Irene hit the region with rain and high winds. Coastal flooding from this week's blizzard may match or exceed Irene's levels. Photo: Stan Honda, AFP/Getty Images
A couple looks at the view of New Jersey from Battery Park in Lower Manhattan on Aug. 28, 2011, as Hurricane Irene hit the region with rain and high winds. Coastal flooding from this week's blizzard may match or exceed Irene's levels. Photo: Stan Honda, AFP/Getty Images

The storm surge from this week’s blizzard will probably peak about 3 to 6 feet above typical high tide levels, according to the latest model runs. Such flooding would probably rival Hurricane Irene’s in New York City, which came within a foot or so of flooding the subway system. Human-caused climate change will contribute about an additional foot to this week’s flooding event.