Skip to Main Content
Have library access? Log in through your library
From Flood Control to Integrated Water Resource Management

From Flood Control to Integrated Water Resource Management: Lessons for the Gulf Coast from Flooding in Other Places in the Last Sixty Years

James P. Kahan
Mengjie Wu
Sara Hajiamiri
Debra Knopman
Copyright Date: 2006
Edition: 1
Published by: RAND Corporation
Pages: 66
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    From Flood Control to Integrated Water Resource Management
    Book Description:

    The loss of life and devastation in the Gulf coast region of the United States after the hurricane season of 2005 has led to considerable debate about how to recover from the damage and mitigate damage from future incidents. This document reports the experiences of four major floods since 1948 (two in the United States, one in the Netherlands, and one in China), to draw lessons for the Gulf coast restoration effort.

    eISBN: 978-0-8330-4279-8
    Subjects: Political Science, Technology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Preface
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  4. Figures and Tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  5. Summary
    (pp. ix-xvi)
  6. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xvii-xviii)
  7. Abbreviations
    (pp. xix-xx)
  8. CHAPTER ONE Introduction
    (pp. 1-6)

    A substantial portion of human history has been spent drying out after a wet natural disaster. Water is a necessary ingredient for life, much less human civilization. Harnessing water for drinking, agriculture, transportation, power, and recreation is the story of human history, but—as has been observed—every advantage has its disadvantage, and humankind is subject to the whims of nature in the form of severe storms, river flooding, tsunamis after earthquakes or volcanic eruptions, or erosion after extended extensive rainfall. Some water-related menaces are as regular as clockwork (such as the annual flooding of the Nile), and some are...

  9. CHAPTER TWO Four Recent Historical Examples
    (pp. 7-30)

    For each of the examples, we first provide an overview of the event. We then discuss in turn the detection, preparation, first response, reconstruction, and compensation aspects of the cycle of restoration, ending with a summary of what we consider the significant observations. Within each element of the cycle and across elements, we focus on those parts that are most noteworthy and discuss what happened both before and after the event under consideration.

    Table 2.1 provides some summary information comparing the date, geographical location, population of the affected area, lives lost, and economic damage of the four example sites.


  10. CHAPTER THREE Synthesis of the Lessons from the Case Studies
    (pp. 31-36)

    The four cases that we have examined are all illustrative of the evolution in thinking about flood management that has taken place in the past 60 years and that has led to new ways of thinking about future floods. In this chapter, we proceed through the cycle of restoration to synthesize the lessons learned from the four case studies. In Chapter Four, we present conclusions from this synthesis that apply to the restoration of the Gulf Coast region following Hurricane Katrina.

    The cases show, through both omission and commission, the value of advance planning. Even though our cases were selected...

  11. CHAPTER FOUR Lessons for the Aftermath of Katrina
    (pp. 37-40)

    We undertook this historical analysis to seek insights that might guide current reconstruction efforts in the Gulf Coast region in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, which struck in the late summer of 2005. In this concluding chapter, we apply the lessons learned from the four case studies to the current aftermath phase of Katrina. Our aim is to provide guidance for going forward rather than to look backward to cast blame. We will then close with some general observations.

    Katrina’s winds, rain, and storm surges—and the failure of multiple levees stressed by the surges—wrought unprecedented death and destruction...

  12. Bibliography
    (pp. 41-46)