PCC Public Lecture, 18 Apr
UW PROGRAM ON CLIMATE CHANGE 10th ANNUAL PUBLIC LECTURE
7:00 PM, 120 Kane Hall
FLOOD OF PROBLEMS: MANAGING BIG WATER IN WESTERN WASHINGTON
Lawrence J. Schick
US Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle
The Pacific Northwest is a land of mild rainfall and stunning mountain landscapes. But, occasionally, the character of that rainfall demonstrates a punishing intensity. When high rainfall intensity becomes concentrated by the steep Cascade Mountains, the runoff produces major floods in western Washington. Those storms cause huge flood risk management challenges. The complexities and uncertainties of NW weather and hydrology are managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, in Seattle. The Corps provides flood risk management by operating dams and coordinating emergency management.
Many difficult questions, judgments and choices arise when practicing flood risk management. Are big floods changing and what is the cause? What is the role of land use, climate change and snow melt in flooding? We'll explore the top NW flooding myths, while you'll discover the singular cause of all major floods. Several major floods, in the past eight years, will be used as examples of how food risk is managed with different and changing conditions. Understand how flood risk management tools are used and critical decisions are made, while we weave through a review of recent, historic floods in Western Washington. The presentation promises a lively blend of science, flood risk management strategy and human interactions with the powerful forces of nature.
You can find more information on this lecture at