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Billion-Dollar Weather and Climate Disasters

National Center for Environmental Education, NOAA

This set of interactive data visualizations show the weather and climate events that have had the greatest economic impact on the US from 1980 to present (updated annually).

Learn more about Teaching Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness»

Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • These graphics can be used as data/evidence in any discussion or talk about the influence of climate change on extreme weather events.

About the Content

  • Based on data compiled by the National Centers for Environmental Information (formerly NCDC), the U.S. has sustained 203 weather and climate disasters since 1980 in which overall damages/costs reached or exceeded $1 billion (at the time of review - numbers updated annually).
  • Comments from expert scientist:
    Scientific strengths:
    - Wonderful graphics that are very clear
    - Methodology and data sources explained
    - 1980-current year to date billion-dollar disaster event frequency for US and each state/US territory

About the Pedagogy

  • Resource includes various interactive graphical displays (frequency mapping, time-series graphs, summary statistics, and chronological table of events) for individual disaster events (drought, flooding, freeze, severe storms, tropical cyclones, wildfires, winter storms) as well as consolidation of all events.
  • User can customize range of years and disaster types, to help visualize how disaster costs change over space and time.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Visualizations are well displayed and referenced. Methodology, references, and data sources provided on home page.
  • Wrap-around text is well written.
  • Graphs are clear and easy to read, and they can be enlarged.
Entered the Collection: June 2018 Last Reviewed: April 2017

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