California's atmopsheric river storms ranked as a billion-dollar disaster by NOAA
So far, in 2023, seven different weather and climate-related disasters have cost the United States at least $1 billion. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data dating back to 1980, that is the second-highest number of events on record for the first four months of a year. One of those billion-dollar disasters is the flooding caused by the many atmospheric river storms that made landfall over California. When doing these cost analyses, NOAA applied climatologists consider many different assets like homes, businesses and government buildings as well as key infrastructure like roads, levees and the electrical grid. Time-related costs like business closures and evacuations are considered as well. Meteorologist Heather Waldman reports.