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  • No one is immune.  
    It was an interesting turn that the expert who was the authors main sources wound up victim to the flood himself. 
    Klaus Jacob, a German professor affiliated with Columbia’s University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, is a geophysicist by profession and a doomsayer by disposition.  ...

    ...In 2011, while working on a government panel, Jacob produced a study that mapped how subway tunnels would be inundated in the event of a hurricane. The next year, he was proved right. After Sandy, Jacob was hailed as a prophet.

    “Nature cooperated — at first timidly, with Irene, and then a little bit more forcefully with Sandy. And God forbid what’s next,” Jacob told me. “One way or another, we get educated, and it’s much cheaper to listen once in a while to engineers and scientists.” Yet Jacob’s moment of vindication was accompanied by an ironic comeuppance: He had been flooded too. ...


    ... Jacob’s personal disaster illustrated, in microcosm, how difficult it can be for anyone, even scientists, to pay heed to science. Despite his acute awareness of risk, he had chosen to make his home on a lane that bordered a grassy marsh. Sitting in his third-floor office, with classical music playing softly in the background,

    Jacob recounted how he had purchased the house after his wife, an artist, fell in love with it. “When I saw it, I said, ‘Oh, God, I can’t do this, this is against all my professional ethos,’ ” Jacob said. “There are other considerations in life that enter into these decisions. I tried to convince her as a scientist, but I’m married to her.” Jacob had taken some protective steps, raising the house’s foundation two feet above the FEMA flood line, and hoped for the best. ...

    It wasn't enough flood waters were two feet deep on his ground floor.

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