In 2012, Hurricane Sandy split Fire Island into two islands, creating a new inlet to the bay behind it. Contrary to the fears of many, there is no evidence suggesting that the opening of the new inlet has increased the risk of of flooding to the mainland (see the following USGS study, Hurricane Sandy Impacts Did Not Contribute to Subsequent Storm Flooding). In fact, scientists say that the breach actually helps clean the bay waters, and fishermen are seeing positive changes.
The following video is courtesy of National Geographic.
On September 29th, The New York Times published an article by Cornelia Dean, the Times science writer and author in residence at Brown University, who presented to the Quogue community this past August in Quogue Village Hall. Her presentation, “Navigating Troubled Waters”, was co-hosted by CCQ and the Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines.
An excerpt from the article is below (please click the below text to read in full)…
Hurricane Sandy was the deadliest and most destructive hurricane of the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season. It was also the largest Atlantic storm on historical record and the second-costliest hurricane in US history.
During the storm (on October 29, 2012), the US Geological Survey updated their assessment of the storm’s potential coastal-change impacts across Delmarva (Delaware, Maryland, Virginia), New Jersey and Long Island.
The below map accompanied the assessment, highlighting the probabilities of “collision, overwash, and inundation associated with Hurricane Sandy.” (To read the entire report, click here.)
Source: USGS (Click image to enlarge)
As the map indicates quite remarkably, Quogue sits in one of the very few geographies that carried a 0-10% probability of over wash and inundation. Contrasted with an area like that of Westhampton Dunes, there is much to appreciate about what is (and is not) appropriate for acting as responsible stewards of our beach.
As Quogue residents, we are very fortunate to have such beautiful, natural and healthy dunes and beaches. Let’s keep them that way.