Economic Devastation From Hurricanes

Climate change has been making hurricanes more destructive like we’ve talked about in the previous topics, but it is also putting a huge impact on human life. When the sea level is higher than normal or high at all, it could be devastating when a hurricane comes through because of how much flooding it would actually cause on those communities that are getting hit with the hurricane. The storm surge is the most important thing to look at when talking about hurricanes. It can swallow you and your house or property in the matter of seconds once it has reached land. We are going to be talking about the damage hurricanes have caused over the last century due to warming and the cost of housing in areas that have gotten hit with massive hurricanes.

Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005 and devastated the entire city and a lot of people we’re affected by this storm and their properties we’re so flooded and damaged some couldn’t return back to their homes. This caused a lot of social decay in the community, meaning people had to flee their homes and many people had to move because the property was no longer livable, or people had to end up leaving their homes because there was nothing around them for them to survive. Nobody wants to live in a community that is falling apart, and this put a damper on housing costs in the New Orleans area for a few years after Hurricane Katrina had hit the area.

From 2004 to 2005 prices of housing was going up because the economy was booming, and it was going great. After, Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005 housing was going up, but after a year you could see housing was dropping because of how much devastation it has caused in the city. People we’re fleeing their homes which caused property in certain areas to go down because resources have dropped. By 2013 which was 7 years later, New Orleans was finally coming back and was able to rebuild some property back and make a living for people again.

People in New Orleans struggled for a few years after Hurricane Katrina had hit the city directly, and you can see as climate changed, storms progressed and got worse, and researchers say climate change played a factor in this disaster because of warming and that caused sea level to rise, higher than expected, and also, made oceans warmer due to higher-than-normal temperatures which climate change also played a rule in. Climate change had an effect on this disaster, and it affected many people living in New Orleans. Hundreds of thousands of houses we’re destroyed or flooded and that’s a lot for one city, so you can see that the economic impact was really devastating for this community.

Another Hurricane that devastated the United States is Hurricane Harvey. It impacted the coast of Texas and caused major destruction like Hurricane Katrina did to New Orleans. Hurricane Harvey struck southeaster Texas on August 25th, 2017. Hurricane Harvey struck at a category 4 Hurricane, just like Hurricane Katrina struck at a category 4. These two hurricanes we’re the costliest hurricanes in our history and caused so much destruction and devastation to our beautiful cities. Hurricane Harvey hit a town north of Corpus Christi, Texas and it was called Port Aransas.

In Harris County where Harvey devastated the most, the people who we’re affected by the flooding had to basically leave their homes, but after Harvey had hit, prices in the areas that didn’t get hit majorly by this storm went up in price because those people who we’re living in the areas that got hit bad had to move to places where they can survive. So, the prices in those areas became more because they weren’t touched and now you have more people coming to other communities, which will increase the cost of living for everyone.

Climate change played a rule in this hurricane too because of how much rain it had brought with it, the amount of evaporation happening equals to the amount of precipitation that it is going to bring down. Climate change is causing hurricanes to intensify as warming continues to happen, and that brings more devastating hurricanes. It may not bring a lot more hurricanes but over time it’s giving it fuel to create giant hurricanes that are more destructive than we’ve ever seen.

Let’s recap on what we’ve learned in the last six blogs. We’ve talked about increase or decrease in tropical storms and came to realize that hurricanes are increasing in intensity and not as much as occurring so often. This means that tropical storms that form aren’t always going to end up being full blown hurricanes, but once they do become hurricanes, they will be much more intensified. Storm surges are a huge worry when talking about hurricanes, they cause the most devastation other than the wind and precipitation because it carries a lot of water onto shore. Also, storm surges are getting higher because of rise of sea level. Sea level is increasing due to climate change because the ice glaciers are melting in our poles which is causing the oceans to rise. Increased coastal population is giving oceans more fuel to warm because of increased greenhouse gases near the ocean. Lastly, climate change is making hurricanes stronger and that’s causing more economic devastation on communities closer to sea level. Climate change making hurricanes stronger is actually causing impact on people by how they’re going to live because once a storm comes through and destroys a whole community, living in these areas are going to go down and you’ll have to find somewhere else to live and depending on if you want to stay close, the prices in communities that weren’t touched by the storm will go up in price because more people means more property tax and more property tax means higher cost of housing. Thank you so much for reading my blogs and I hope you enjoyed and learned a few things about how climate change can affect hurricanes and how that can impact human lives.

Works Consulted

“The State of Housing in New Orleans One Year After Katrina”, The Opportunity Agenda. The Opportunity Agenda. 2006. https://www.opportunityagenda.org/explore/resources-publications/state-housing-new-orleans-one-year-after-katrina#:~:text=Katrina%20and%20the%20levee%20breaches,56%25%20of%20all%20rental%20units.

Fleming, Mark. “What the Post-Katrina Real Estate Market Can Tell us About Hurricane Harvey’s Impact on Houston”, First American. Schema. September 8, 2017. https://blog.firstam.com/economics/what-the-post-katrina-real-estate-market-can-tell-us-about-hurricane-harveys-impact-on-houston

“Unravelling Perceptions of Flood Risk: Examining Changes in Home Prices in Harris County, Texas in the Aftermath of Hurricane Harvey” FreddieMac. Septemer 10, 2020. https://www.freddiemac.com/research/insight/20200910-unravelling-perceptions-of-flood-risk

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