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New NOAA tool pinpoints natural disaster risk down to county level

“NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) has released an innovative mapping tool that provides county-level information on natural disaster hazards across the United States. This new feature provides significant enhancements to the state-level data on NOAA’s Billion-Dollar Disasters website. Developed by NCEI with data from NOAA, FEMA and academic institutions, this interactive NOAA mapping tool provides detailed information on a location’s susceptibility to weather and climate hazards that can lead to billion-dollar disasters—such as wildfires, floods, drought and heat waves, tornado outbreaks, and hurricanes. The tool expands upon FEMA’s National Risk Index to provide a view of a location’s risk for, and vulnerability to, single or multiple combinations of weather and climate hazards for every county and county-equivalent in all 50 states, and the District of Columbia…This online resource comes at a time when the number and cost of billion-dollar disasters in the U.S. has been increasing. In 2020 alone, the nation experienced an unprecedented 22 separate billion-dollar climate and weather disasters that killed at least 262 people. As of October 8, 2021, the U.S. had been impacted by 18 separate billion-dollar disasters with total, direct losses of $104.8 billion—already more costly than 2020…”

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