October 29 marks the two-year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy roaring ashore, destroying homes, businesses and infrastructure in its path. For those still on the road to recovery two years later, the trauma of the hurricane remains ever present. However, many communities have recovered and rebounded, with life largely returning to normal throughout much of New York, New Jersey and the rest of the Northeast.

Executive Summary

Extreme weather events aren't going to stop, so we must try to live with nature and prepare for what it can bring, says Swiss Re's Dr. Megan Linkin, who advises that now is the time to develop public-private disaster risk financing strategies—before a $100 billion event hits.

For months after Sandy, experts highlighted the uniqueness of the storm, with its westward track perpendicular to the New Jersey coast, interaction with the jet stream and the king tide. The probability of a storm taking a similar track is low—experts say approximately 1 in every 500 years. Yet, it’s imperative that the returning sense of normalcy and reassurances of infrequency do not morph into a false sense of security.

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