Policy Update

Flood Risks to Increase Along with Severe Storms



NCEL Point of Contact

Ava Gallo
Climate and Energy Program Manager


Shifting rainfall patterns and the amount of water in the ground is raising flood risk in the Northern U.S., according to new research from the University of Iowa. These changes stem from warming global temperatures that trap more water vapor in the atmosphere. As a result, scientists found strong evidence that flooding events will increase in frequency.

Meanwhile, major rainfall events like the one that caused the Louisiana Flood in 2016 are at least 40% more likely as a result of climate change, according to a different study by NOAA scientists. That particular event saw rainfall totals of 25 to 30 inches, at least 13 deaths, and an estimated $8.7 billion in damage.


  • A news story about increased flood risk in the Northern U.S. is here.
  • The full study about recent trends in U.S. flood risks is available here.
  • A news story on the increase in Gulf Coast storms is here.
  • The full study by NOAA is here.