Hurricane Katrina Understanding physical and social vulnerability

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GIS Level:
  • Intermediate
Geographic Scale:
  • Local
Target Audience:
  • Career-Workforce
  • Higher Ed
New Orleans Louisiana

What areas along the Gulf Coast of the United States are particularly vulnerable, physically and socially, to hurricanes? Hurricane Katrina revealed the extent to which a natural disaster can devastate a community. A variety of geographic variables came into play, such as locales closest to the ocean, of lowest elevation, and where the most rain fell. Social variables, such as where the urban poor lived, also affected the outcome. By charting where the most damage occurred and why, investigators can help plan how to mitigate problems, respond to threats, and protect areas before and during similar events in the future. This lesson is part of the Spatialabs series.

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