In the midst of an unusually long and heavy period of storms across the state of California, The Wall Street Journal writes about the expected effects in the Los Angeles area. Dr. Brett Sanders, a leading flood researcher at the UC Irvine Blum Center, was interviewed in relation to the intense rainfall California has been getting. 

Local officials have warned about flash floods and rain, and Sanders expects a lot of damage due to the unpreparedness of the state as a whole. FEMA has previously shared flood maps that identify which areas are more vulnerable to flooding, but some organizations and researchers say that existing flood risk maps are not the whole story and that many other places are also vulnerable to flooding. Sanders says flooding in the Los Angeles area is due mostly to our excessive expansion of “impervious surfaces” like concrete – which are areas that do not naturally allow rainfall and floodwaters to flow through. In addition, our dams are unprepared for the massive flooding we could experience during periods of heavy rainfall. 

As the rainfall and storms get worse in the state of California, Sanders’s line of research has become increasingly important not only to academics but to policymakers and the civilians of vulnerable communities as well. 

If you want to read more directly from The Wall Street Journal, click here.