The journal Hydrology and Earth System Sciences released a study September 6 that showed climate change increased the likelihood of the severe storm that hit Louisiana on August 11 by at least 40 percent, and that it increased the chance of rain volume by 10 percent.
The study, conducted by researchers from Princeton University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, found climate change nearly doubled the odds of such an event happening. The report is currently undergoing peer review.
“With this attribution analysis we looked specifically at the recent deluge in south Louisiana,” said lead author Karin van der Wiel, a postdoctoral research associate at Princeton, on the university’s news site. “We found global warming can play a measurable role in events such as the August rains that resulted in such devastating floods, affecting so many people.”
Though the rain ended some time ago, the after effects are far from over. More than 150,000 properties were damaged, and many families are still living in shelters. The latest numbers show that the state experienced nearly $9 billion in damage costs. Gov. John Bel Edwards met with President Barack Obama yesterday to request a $2 billion federal aid package to help with his state’s financial woes. The government has also warned survivors of scam artists who pose as FEMA inspectors to steal their private information like Social Security and bank account numbers.