Paris should prepare now for risk of a costly Seine flood

seine inondationJanuary 24, 2014, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

Quote press-release:

“24/01/2014 – A major flooding of the Seine River similar to the flood disaster of 1910 could affect up to 5 million residents in the greater Paris area and cause up to 30 billion euros worth of damage, according to a new OECD report. Economic growth, jobs and public finances could also be significantly affected.

The OECD Review on Flood Risk Management of the Seine River – commissioned by the Basin Organisation Seine Grands Lacs with the French Ministry of Ecology and Ile-de-France regional council – recommends that city officials work to raise risk awareness among citizens and businesses and improve the resilience of the metropolitan area to flood risks.

Recent floods in Europe and New York City’s Hurricane Sandy disaster in 2012 illustrated the vulnerability of today’s ever-denser cities to flooding and the need to adapt critical infrastructure systems to be able to cope with extreme weather events. The 1910 Paris flood took several weeks to subside.

“The impact on Paris of a major flood would be much greater today than a century ago, with serious economic and social consequences on top of the temporary disruption and material losses,” said Rolf Alter, Director of the OECD’s Public Governance and Territorial Development Directorate. “The better Paris prepares itself to manage this risk and improve its resilience, the less vulnerable it will be, to the benefit of the city and the country.” Read more >

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