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Projecting Changes in Expected Annual Damages From Riverine Flooding in the United States

C. Wobus , P. Zheng, J. Stein, C. Lay , H. Mahoney, M. Lorie, D. Mills , R. Spies, B. Szafranski, and J. Martinich


June 18, 2019

Inland flood risk in the United States is most often conveyed in the context of “100‐year” floodplains. However, monetary damages from flooding arise from a wide range of events, including floods both larger and smaller than the 100-year benchmark. Abt researchers and their colleagues used a sample of 376 watersheds to explore the implications of a changing frequency and magnitude of flooding across a wide spectrum of flood events in the United States. The expected annual damages under baseline climate conditions are typically significantly higher than the expected damages from 100‐year events alone.