Community Rating System (CRS) Green Guide for Community Resilience

This guide is an online resource highlighting 25 “green” activities or elements from FEMA’s 2017 Community Rating System (CRS) Coordinator’s Manual. FEMA's National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)’s CRS is a voluntary insurance rating program that recognizes communities for implementing floodplain management practices that exceed the Federal minimum requirements of NFIP. In exchange for flood risk reduction practices, policyholders can receive reduced flood insurance premiums. The guide was designed to give local planners and floodplain managers information to support more participation in CRS and to increase flood resilience by protecting and strengthening natural ecosystems. 

The Green Guide provides a summary or “profile” for 25 CRS elements to help communities assess whether they are eligible for certain CRS credits based on their current practices, or whether they can successfully implement a specific creditable activity. Each element profile includes a description of creditable activities, maximum amount of CRS points that can be earned and impact adjustments, tips for success, the level of difficulty for documentation and implementation of activities, links to helpful tools and resources, and a description of co-benefits associated with element activities. Many of the co-benefits highlighted in the CRS Green Guide relate to the physical, biological, economic, and societal benefits of naturally functioning floodplains (eg. floodwater storage and conveyance, creation of habitat, and recreational opportunities). Most element profiles also include examples from CRS communities to illustrate successful implementation of the activity. 

The 25 “green” elements featured in this guide relate to the following types of activities:

  • Map Information Services
  • Outreach Projects
  • Floodplain Mapping
  • Open Space Preservation
  • Higher Regulatory Standards
  • Flood Data Maintenance
  • Stormwater Management
  • Floodplain Management Planning
  • Acquisition and Relocation
  • Drainage System Maintenance

The Best Practices section is based on experiences and lessons learned from successful CRS communities across the country. Nine best practices are identified and described along with examples of how they have been implemented.


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Resource Types:

  • Best practice
  • Policy analysis/recommendations


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