The Case for Tolerable Risk Guidelines to Manage Flood Risk: Nature Bats Last

by Lawrence H. Roth, P.E., (F.ASCE), Principal Engineer; Arcadis, Sacramento, CA, larry.roth@arcadis.com,
Jessica Ludy, G.E., Water Resources Planner; Arcadis, San Francisco, CA, jessica.ludy@arcadis.com,
, D.GE

Serial Information: Geo-Strata —Geo Institute of ASCE, 2017, Vol. 21, Issue 2, Pg. 50-55


Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Since ancient times, people have used levees to reduce flood risk. We have built over 30,000 miles of levees in the U.S., largely on the belief that levies will unconditionally protect people who live behind them. As a profession and a society, we often fail to adequately communicate that levees reduce flood risk, but cannot eliminate it. Following recent flood disasters, however, the public is beginning to understand that levees have limitations. Because the geo-professional community plays a key role in flood risk management, we must do our part to improve the ways flood risk is communicated to the public.

Subject Headings: Floods | Risk management | Levees and dikes | Professional societies | Engineering profession | Geotechnical engineering | Public health and safety

 

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