Assessing the influence of climate change on flooding hazards following tropical cyclone events in the southeast United States

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dc.contributor Senkbeil, Jason C.
dc.contributor Waylen, Peter R.
dc.contributor.advisor Cohen, Sagy Stone, Monica Helen 2017-03-01T17:46:38Z 2017-03-01T17:46:38Z 2016
dc.identifier.other u0015_0000001_0002395
dc.identifier.other Stone_alatus_0004M_12834
dc.description Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
dc.description.abstract Recent tropical cyclones, like Hurricane Katrina, have been some of the worst the United States has experienced. Tropical cyclones are expected to intensify, bringing about 20% more precipitation, in the near future in response to global climate warming. Further, global climate warming may extend the hurricane season. This study focuses on four major river basins (Neches, Pearl, Mobile, and Roanoke) in the Southeast United States that are frequently impacted by tropical cyclones. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used to model flow along these rivers from 1998-2014 with 20% more precipitation during tropical cyclones. The results of this study show that an increase in tropical cyclone precipitation due to future climate change may increase peak flows at the mouths of these Southeast rivers by ~7-18%. Most tropical cyclones that impact these river basins occur during the low discharge season, and thus rarely produce flooding conditions at their mouths. An extension of the current hurricane season of June-November, due to global climate warming, could encroach upon the wet season in these basins and lead to increased flooding. On average, this analysis shows that an extension of the hurricane season to May-December increased flooding susceptibility by 63% for the rivers analyzed in this study. That is, 4-6 more days per year likely would have been above bankfull discharge if an average tropical cyclone had occurred any day (based on 1998-2014 data) in the months May-December than in the current hurricane season months of June-November. More research is needed on the mechanisms and processes involved in the water balance of the four rivers analyzed in this study, and others in the Southeast United States, and how this is likely to change in the near future with global climate warming.
dc.format.extent 72 p.
dc.format.medium electronic
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language English
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.publisher University of Alabama Libraries
dc.relation.ispartof The University of Alabama Electronic Theses and Dissertations
dc.relation.ispartof The University of Alabama Libraries Digital Collections
dc.relation.hasversion born digital
dc.rights All rights reserved by the author unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subject.other Physical geography
dc.subject.other Hydrologic sciences
dc.subject.other Climate change
dc.title Assessing the influence of climate change on flooding hazards following tropical cyclone events in the southeast United States
dc.type thesis
dc.type text University of Alabama. Dept. of Geography Geography The University of Alabama master's M.S.

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