Tag Archives: Modeling

Ahead of the game

New visualization tool mixes FEMA data with video-game technology to model flood damages before they occur The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers a long list of tools and datasets to help U.S. residents understand their specific property’s risk of experiencing severe flooding. However, terms like 100-year flood and storm surge do little to […]

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USGS estimates impervious parking lot coverage for all 3,109 U.S. counties

According to automotive industry analysts with Hedges & Co. (Hudson, Ohio), there were more than 275 million registered motor vehicles in the U.S. in 2018. Accommodating that number of vehicles requires an enormous network of parking lots, the vast majority of which are made of impervious pavement that rainwater cannot infiltrate. Until now, researchers have […]

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New flood model: Slight increases in rainfall can create major traffic disruptions

Many of the modeling tools that public works agencies, disaster response organizations, and watershed managers use to predict the effects of flooding from major storms do not consider a detail that makes a major difference, according to new research: land elevation. A study published in May in the journal Nature Communications describes a new flood-modeling […]

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Urban flood mitigation in Quebec City

Quebec City has deployed a real-time decision-support system that uses modeling, monitoring, and other measures to regulate flooding conditions for a 100-year storm event. Authors Diana Qing Tao and Martin Pleau of Tetra Tech and Denis Brisson and Nathalie Jolicoeur of the City of Quebec explain how the real-time control (RTC) system provides flood protection. […]

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U.S. EPA and USGS collaborate on new surface-water modeling tool

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is working with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to combine two popular streamflow analysis tools into a single, integrated resource. The Surface Water Toolbox (SWToolbox), which has not yet been released to the public, will allow users to compute an extensive number of metrics associated with modeling how surface […]

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‘Rainstorm generator’ predicts more frequent – but less intense – dryland thunderstorms

In the lowest and most arid parts of the Colorado River basin, moisture from the ground rises into the atmosphere before condensing rapidly to form frequent and sudden thunderstorms. These storms, which typically control the flow of runoff, provide irrigation for river-bank plants, supplement water supplies, and affect the chance that the river will flood, […]

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New report predicts extreme precipitation in global dry and wet areas

A new study warns that extreme precipitation over land will increase in the world’s wettest and driest areas, with the hydrological cycle intensifying as a result of global warming. Released by Nature Climate Change, a monthly journal dedicated to publishing the most significant and cutting-edge research on the science of climate change including its impacts […]

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New phosphorus reduction targets aim to reduce toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie

The U.S. and Canadian governments have adopted targets to reduce phosphorus entering areas of Lake Erie by 40% in an effort to improve water quality and minimize risks to public health. The reductions seek to decrease the amount of low oxygen “dead zones” in the central basin of Lake Erie, encourage algae growth at a […]

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New Bond Opportunities Focus on Climate Resiliency

RE.bound program develops new resilience bond A team of private sector partners has released the framework for a new insurance-based product intended to generate capital for risk-reduction projects. The RE.bound Program, released Dec. 9, 2015, offers a new financial product called a “resilience bond.” These bonds are designed to help manage the financial risk from […]

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Guide Examines Community Adaptation to More Frequent and Intense Rainfall

With the potential for more frequent and intense storms as part of a changing climate, communities now are looking at how they manage rainwater and flooding. Minnehaha Creek Watershed District (MCWD) partnered with two Twin Cities’ communities — Minneapolis and Victoria — in a federally-funded study that examines the effects of changing rainfall patterns and […]

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