Browse

You are looking at 51 - 60 of 684 items for :

  • Weather, Climate, and Society x
  • Refine by Access: All Content x
Clear All
Felicia Casanova
,
Shivangi Prasad
,
Daniela Bermudez Garolera
,
Cameron Riopelle
, and
Justin Stoler

Abstract

South Florida experiences some of the highest coastal hurricane vulnerability in the United States. Mobile home communities in south Florida are particularly vulnerable to hurricanes due to the weaker structural integrity of the home or land and a mix of structural and sociodemographic factors. A mixed-methods study was conducted to assess hurricane risk perceptions, experiences, and decision-making among permanent mobile home park (MHP) residents in Broward and Miami-Dade Counties. Return-by-mail surveys were distributed in July 2016 after several years of nominal hurricane activity in south Florida (and before Hurricane Matthew’s formation in September 2016), and focus groups were conducted at MHPs in May 2018, eight months after Hurricane Irma’s September 2017 landfall. Quantitative analysis of 44 in-person and 57 return-by-mail survey responses revealed that respondents tended to be older, retired, or unemployed and had modest levels of education, with many expressing forms of social- and structural-level hurricane risk before Hurricane Matthew. Qualitative analysis of six focus group discussions conducted after Hurricane Irma revealed that the constraints and vulnerabilities experienced by residents coalesced into several primary themes related to preparation, evacuation, assistance, stress and anxiety, tree concerns, and recovery. Participants specifically highlighted their concerns about tree hazards, damages, and maintenance issues arising before, during, and after hurricanes in MHPs. These results build on the scholarship on hurricane risk by underscoring the structural and social vulnerability of residents living in MHPs that constrain building resilience, adaptive capacity, community restoration efforts, and advocating for policy changes.

Significance Statement

This study aims to understand local hurricane risk perceptions, experiences, and vulnerabilities among residents of mobile home parks after a decade-long hurricane drought in south Florida and also to understand the barriers residents faced after a major hurricane. A hurricane drought is critical to study because it can erode individual and community-level preparedness. Residents of mobile home parks may experience more flooding, higher winds, tornadoes, and other dangers during hurricanes. Residents also face county-, neighborhood-, and household-level structural vulnerabilities that restrict their options related to hurricane preparedness, safety during a storm, and resilience in its aftermath. Our study uses various forms of data collection to obtain insights from permanent residents of mobile home parks in south Florida. In addition, it discusses the social and economic disadvantages and opportunities that policy makers can address in climate change risk management.

Restricted access
Philipp Schneider
,
Annegret Thieken
, and
Ariane Walz

Abstract

Management of adverse health-related effects from heat waves requires comprehensive and accessible sources of information. This paper examines the effects of temperature and air pollution on human health and identifies areas with increased occurrence of emergency ambulance dispatches in the city of Würzburg, Bavaria, Germany, and discusses the applicability for health care interventions and urban planning. An overdispersed Poisson generalized additive model was used to examine and predict the association and potential lag of exposure between temperature, air pollution, and three types of emergency ambulance dispatches during the study period from 2011 to 2019. A linear model was used to estimate heat-wave effects. A line density function was used to identify areas with increased occurrence of dispatches. Significant effects of temperature were detected for nontraumatic and cardiovascular diseases after exceeding a threshold temperature. The exposure–response relationships showed an increased relative risk up to two days after exposure for nontraumatic and cardiovascular diseases. Results indicate a significant association between presence of heat waves and cardiovascular diseases with up to 17% (95% confidence interval: 5.9%–30.0%) increased relative risk on a heat-wave day relative to a non-heat-wave day. Dispatches for cardiovascular diseases occur more often in areas with a high population and building density, especially in summer. The analyses identified hotspots of heat-related dispatches in areas with increased population and building density and provides baseline information for interventions in future urban planning and public health care management based on data commonly available even in small cities.

Significance Statement

The purpose of this study is to demonstrate how authorities in even medium- and small-sized cities can assess health impacts of heat stress or air pollution using free accessible emergency ambulance data and software to incorporate the outcomes in their spatial planning or health care management. This is important as ongoing climate change requires all urban communities to adapt and reduce adverse impacts of climate change and air pollution. Our results show that extreme heat leads to increased emergency ambulance dispatches in a medium-sized city in Germany and provide a spatial overview of where health care interventions and urban planning can focus to mitigate adverse effects.

Open access
Leanne Giordono
,
Muhammad Usman Amin Siddiqi
,
Greg Stelmach
,
Chad Zanocco
,
June Flora
, and
Hilary Boudet

Abstract

The September 2020 Oregon wildfires were unprecedented in terms of their geographic scope and the number of communities affected by smoke and wildfire. Although it is difficult to directly attribute the event to climate change, scientists have noted the strong connection between warmer and drier conditions in the western United States—conditions that are linked to climate change—and increasing wildfire risk. These wildfires thus had the potential to act as a “focusing event,” potentially strengthening public support for climate change policy. Political ideology is a well-known driver of public support for climate change mitigation policies in the United States, but few studies have examined adaptation policy support. Moreover, other factors shaping postevent support for the two “pillars” of climate change policy—adaptation and mitigation—have rarely been compared. We conducted a survey of Oregonians within 6 months of the 2020 wildfires (n = 1308) to understand postevent support for climate mitigation and adaptation policies. We found that the magnitude of the association between political ideology and policy support was lower for adaptation policies than for mitigation policies, and there was no association with support for forest management changes. In contrast, selected sociodemographic characteristics played a more important role in support for selected adaptation policies than for mitigation policies.

Significance Statement

Increasing wildfire risk in the western United States is connected to warmer and drier conditions, both of which are linked to climate change. Most research on postevent support for climate change policy has focused on climate change mitigation policies. This study examines and compares public support for both mitigation and adaptation policies after the 2020 Oregon wildfires, yielding important information about the factors that shape support for each.

Free access
Lily L. Kraft
,
Gabriele Villarini
, and
Jeffrey Czajkowski

Abstract

During the spring of 2019, severe flooding across the U.S. Midwest caused widespread damage to communities in the Missouri and Mississippi River basins. While it is known that flood magnitude and economic damage are often related, little work exists to examine these factors simultaneously. In this study, we analyze both the hydrologic and socioeconomic characteristics of the 2019 Midwest flood to gain a comprehensive understanding of impacts to individuals, households, and communities. We examine flood magnitude, duration, and probability of occurrence in tandem with claim and grant applications from federal disaster recovery programs, such as the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and the Individual and Households Program (IHP). Overall, we find that many areas, particularly in Nebraska and Iowa, experienced moderate or major flooding due to historic discharge magnitudes. In these states, NFIP claims totaled more than $31 million and IHP applications exceeded $42 million in reported damages. In most cases, counties that reported a high density of insurance claims or grant applications overlapped with regions with significant flooding. We also identify the economic advantages to NFIP policyholders for flood recovery in terms of aid eligibility and financial aid amounts.

Restricted access
Kate Sambrook
,
Sally Russell
,
Yasmina Okan
, and
Emmanouil Konstantinidis

Abstract

Heat stress from the environment can be detrimental to athletes’ health and performance. No research, however, has explored how elite athletes conceptualize and experience heatwaves and climate change. Utilizing a qualitative approach, this study examined elite athletes’ perceptions, experiences, and responses to extreme heat in relation to climate change and explored the use of their platforms for climate activism. Fourteen elite athletes from the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States, Sweden, and Canada, who represented 10 different sports including race walking, netball, and cricket were recruited using snowball sampling. Data were collected using semistructured interviews. Thematic analysis revealed four broad themes. The first theme reflected uncertainty surrounding the causes of heatwaves and the impact of heat on athlete health and performance. The second theme reflected care and concern for sport and society, including concern for the well-being of athletes and spectators, the impact of heat on facilities and participation at the grassroots level, and how the nature of sport may change in the future. The third theme referred to the implications of heatwave experience on athlete health and performance, and how experience affected individual and organizational preparedness. The fourth theme referred to enablers and barriers to successful climate change communication. This study contributes to the sport ecology literature by introducing the subjective heat experiences of elite athletes. Educating athletes and event organizers about the impacts of heat on sport participation is imperative to increase awareness and, it is hoped, to limit illness for those training and competing.

Open access
Alexander Ugarov

Abstract

The National Weather Service is planning to implement the system of probabilistic tornado warnings. In this paper, I estimate and compare the full societal costs of tornadoes with existing deterministic and potential probabilistic warnings. These full costs include the value of statistical lives lost as well as the value of the time spent sheltering. I find that probabilistic tornado warnings would decrease total expected fatalities. The improvement in decision-making would also decrease the total opportunity cost of time spent sheltering, even though the total sheltering time is likely to increase. In total, probabilistic warnings should lower the societal costs of tornadoes relative to deterministic warnings by approximately $76–139 million per year, with a large portion of this improvement coming from fewer casualties.

Significance Statement

I measure societal benefits of probabilistic and deterministic tornado warnings in the United States by evaluating their effects on expected casualties and sheltering costs. I find that probabilistic warnings deliver almost twice as much net societal benefit as deterministic ones. These gains happen as a result of fewer casualties and making protective behavior more responsive to risks and sheltering costs. This paper provides additional evidence of the need to implement probabilistic extreme weather warnings.

Free access
Anirban Kundu
,
Sayani Mukhopadhyay
, and
Parthiba Basu

Abstract

The impact of climate change on subsistence agriculture is a major concern in the developing world. The vulnerability of the coastal regions to climate change has been highlighted, in particular. The present study assessed the impact of climate change on subsistence rice farming on the eastern Indian coast using an integrated approach of statistical trend analysis by the Mann–Kendall test and Sen’s slope estimation of climate data and remote sensing–based land-cover analyses using the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), normalized difference water index (NDWI), and land surface temperature (LST) complemented by a questionnaire-based perception survey among the farming community. There has been a noticeable change in both ambient temperature and LST in the region. The delayed arrival of the monsoon critically impacts the cropping calendar. The crop harvest season has shifted farther into a time of the year that is prone to weather extremes. Analyses of NDVI and NDWI also indicate a shift in the cropping calendar. Over the years, there was an increasing degree of negative correlation between LST and NDVI in November, which indicates increasing water stress for crops in that time juncture. This may further cause crop sterility and yield loss. The study also reveals large-scale conversion of paddy-growing agricultural land into prawn aquaculture ponds. Farmers attributed such land-use change to cultivation stress caused by the delayed monsoon and consequent crop loss from weather extremes and changes in crop agronomic conditions. Farmers also report increased pest attacks and attribute that to an increasing temperature regime.

Free access
Ekaterina Bogdanovich
,
Lars Guenther
,
Markus Reichstein
,
Dorothea Frank
,
Georg Ruhrmann
,
Alexander Brenning
,
Jasper M. C. Denissen
, and
René Orth

Abstract

Both the frequency and intensity of hot temperature extremes are expected to increase in the coming decades, challenging various socioeconomic sectors including public health. Therefore, societal attention data available in real time, such as Google search attention, could help monitor heat-wave impacts in domains with lagged data availability. Here, we jointly analyze societal attention and health impacts of heat waves in Germany at weekly time scales. We find that Google search attention responds similarly to hot temperatures as indicators of public health impacts, represented by excess mortality and hospitalizations. This emerges from piecewise linear relationships of Google search attention to and health impacts of temperature. We can then determine temperature thresholds above which both attention and public health are affected by heat. More generally, given the clear and similar response of societal indicators to heat, we conclude that heat waves can and should be defined from a joint societal and meteorological perspective, whereby temperatures are compared with thresholds established using societal data. A better joint understanding of societal attention and health impacts offers the potential to better manage future heat waves.

Open access
Amy Polen
,
Jennifer Collins
,
Elizabeth Dunn
,
Stephen Murphy
,
Isabelle Jernigan
,
Killian McSweeney
, and
Yi-Jie Zhu

Abstract

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, decision-making during disasters fundamentally changed to accommodate the combined risks of hurricanes and infectious diseases. Prior research conducted in 2020 by Collins et al. examined how individuals changed their intended evacuation decision-making during the pandemic or their actual evacuation decisions during Hurricanes Laura and Sally. Hurricane Ida provided further data on evacuation decision-making when vaccinations and masks were widely available. A digital survey was disseminated to individuals affected by Hurricane Ida in 2021. Respondents provided information about their actual evacuation choices and perceptions of public shelters and COVID-19 risks. In comparison with the 2020 hurricane season, more individuals have reduced negative perceptions of hurricane shelters. However, individuals were less likely to utilize public shelters than in the 2020 season, with 11.4% more individuals stating they would definitely or probably avoid using shelters in 2021. Fewer individuals identified that COVID-19 was a primary reason they chose to stay home during Hurricane Ida (19.5% as compared with 86.8% during Hurricanes Laura and Sally). Furthermore, respondents with health risks for severe COVID-19 symptoms were no more likely to evacuate than those respondents who had no health risks. Potentially, as the pandemic progressed and vaccine availability and COVID-19 management improved, COVID-19 has had less impact on evacuation decision-making. The results from this work should guide planners in emergency management and public health in future hurricane seasons and future pandemics or other outbreaks to anticipate behavior changes and properly manage infectious disease threats.

Free access
Faith Mitheu
,
Elisabeth Stephens
,
Celia Petty
,
Andrea Ficchì
,
Elena Tarnavsky
, and
Rosalind Cornforth

Abstract

Anticipatory actions are increasingly being taken before an extreme flood event to reduce the impacts on lives and livelihoods. Local contextualized information is required to support real-time local decisions on where and when to act and what anticipatory actions to take. This study defines an impact-based, early-warning trigger system that integrates flood forecasts with livelihood information, such as crop calendars, to target anticipatory actions better. We demonstrate the application of this trigger system using a flood case study from the Katakwi District in Uganda. First, we integrate information on the local crop cycles with the flood forecasts to define the impact-based trigger system. Second, we verify the impact-based system using historical flood impact information and then compare it with the existing hazard-based system in the context of humanitarian decisions. Study findings show that the impact-based trigger system has an improved probability of flood detection compared with the hazard-based system. There are fewer missed events in the impact-based system, while the trigger dates are similar in both systems. In a humanitarian context, the two systems trigger anticipatory actions at the same time. However, the impact-based trigger system can be further investigated in a different context (e.g., for livelihood protection) to assess the value of the local information. The impact-based system could also be a valuable tool to validate the existing hazard-based system, which builds more confidence in its use in informing anticipatory actions. The study findings, therefore, should open avenues for further dialogue on what the impact-based trigger system could mean within the broader forecast-based action landscape toward building the resilience of at-risk communities.

Open access