ATLANTA – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that a grant of more than $1.4 million will be awarded to the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality in support of its floodplain mapping program.
FEMA will provide $1,430,000 in federal funds toward projects to improve existing flood insurance rate maps and flood risk data, which will strengthen local communities’ ability to understand and communicate their flood risk and make informed decisions about flood risk reduction.
The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality will update flood maps and develop a watershed report for the Lower Big Black Watershed including Holmes, Yazoo, Madison, Warren, Hinds and Claiborne counties. Additionally, flood risk data will be developed for Lower Pearl, Big Sunflower and Mississippi Coastal watersheds including Lamar, Marion, Walthall, Pearl River, Hancock, Coahoma, Bolivar, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Leflore, Washington, Humphreys, Sharkey, Yazoo, Issaquena, Washington, Warren, Stone, Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties. This funding will also help the following communities with topographic data collection and identifying areas at risk for flooding and solutions for reducing that risk: the Middle Pearl-Strong and Lower Leaf watersheds including Madison, Leake, Scott, Hinds, Rankin, Copiah, Smith, Simpson, Jasper, Clarke, Jones, Wayne, Lamar, Forrest, Perry and Greene counties.
Flood maps and flood risk data are being updated for communities across the country with the ultimate goal of protecting property owners and the community from the risks associated with flooding. This is a collaborative process, during which FEMA works closely with states and local communities to incorporate the latest and most accurate information into flood risk products.
Flood risks can change over time due to factors such as construction and development, environmental changes, floodplain widening or shifting, and other natural or manmade changes—which is why it’s important that flood maps and flood risk data are updated periodically to reflect these changes. Additionally, the information developed for these projects will be more precise because the latest science available is applied in gathering flood risk data and creating flood maps.
Updated flood maps and flood risk data will ultimately assist local area governments in planning for future development and rebuilding efforts.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.