Increased Weather Volatility and Resulting Impacts from Excessive Rainfall Events

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Tuesday, 6 January 2015: 8:30 AM
221A-C (Phoenix Convention Center - West and North Buildings)
Jeffry Johnson, Schneider Electric, Minneapolis, MN

One of the most noteworthy weather events that has shown an increase in recent decades has been the greater frequency of extreme rainfall occurrences. The combination of these more frequent excessive precipitation events along with society's expansion of infrastructure and increased sensitivity to extreme weather produces a variety of impacts that are being experienced. While extreme events such as these remain locally rare in nature, it is useful to examine some of the more common impacts that are encountered so that planning to limit disruptions can be made.

Flood losses in the United States have accounted for approximately 1/5th of natural hazard costs since 1960 and this amount could increase in the future if recent trends hold. Individuals, businesses and communities should evaluate the risks associated with extreme rainfall events and consider what impacts typically occur during and after such incidents. Some of the more commonly observed local impacts will be explored as an aid when planning for mitigation or adaptation.