Oroville Dam's close call shows regulatory need to account for climate change

March 2017

Nícola Ulibarrí, Assistant Professor of Planning, Policy and Design, wrote a feature for The Sacramento Bee. In light of the recent events with Oroville Dam, she educates readers on the need to "strengthen the regulatory process to ensure safer operations of dams." In this article, she outlines the steps needed to reduce the likelihood of the country's dams from failing.

Over time, nuisance flooding can cost more than extreme, infrequent events

February 2017

Long-term impact of climate change on US cities is rising, UCI researchers find

Global climate change is being felt in many coastal communities of the United States, not always in the form of big weather disasters but as a steady drip, drip, drip of nuisance flooding.

According to researchers at the University of California, Irvine, rising sea levels will cause these smaller events to become increasingly frequent in the future, and the cumulative effect may be comparable to extreme events such as Hurricane Katrina or Superstorm Sandy.

“Catastrophic storms get a lot of media attention and are studied, but we wanted to know more about the non-extreme events,” said Amir AghaKouchak, UCI associate professor of civil & environmental engineering and co-author of a new study on cumulative hazards in the American Geophysical Union journal Earth’s Future.

Why is the drought not over yet?

February 2017

David Feldman, Professor of Planning, Policy and Design, is quoted in L.A. Weekly, giving insight as to why the six-year drought is still in effect for Los Angeles county, despite the recent storms and above-average rainfall occurring in California. In this article, he cites groundwater replenishment and existing conservation policies as the causes to the reluctance to declare an end to the drought.

From L.A. Weekly: