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Predicting future economic damage from storm surge – the development of a fine-grained loss index in Tampa, Florida

Authors: Edward Helderop*, University of Texas Austin, Tony H Grubesic, University of Texas Austin
Topics: Hazards and Vulnerability, Coastal and Marine
Keywords: Hurricane, storm surge, Tampa, economic damage
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Many coastal communities around the world face a significant and growing risk from hurricane storm surge. Storm surge is nearly always the largest source of damage to developed coastal regions when hurricanes make landfall. As such, accurate predictions of potential future storm surges are important to local governments, emergency management offices, and individual citizens. Here, we develop a property loss index that seeks to quantify the total economic risk posed by several simulated hurricane storm surges. This index operates at a high resolution in and around Tampa Bay, Florida and aims to further aid urban planners responsible for sustainable coastal development, insurers (private or government) who are reckoning with a future of stronger storms, and individual property owners (or potential property owners) interested in making responsible development decisions. The paper concludes with a discussion of public policy and emergency management in a climate change-driven future.

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