SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN: Hurricane Irma: Florida’s Overdevelopment Has Created a Ticking Time Bomb

Scientific American: Written by Annie Sneed. September 12, 2017. 

Millions are without power in Florida after Irma—one of the most powerful Atlantic hurricanes on record—swept through the state this weekend before weakening to a tropical storm. It caused its fair share of damage, but Florida’s most ominous fears did not play out; extremely vulnerable eastern coastal areas, including Miami, were spared the worst.

But meteorologist and disaster risk expert Stephen Strader says the state is still in a very dangerous position, due to intense population growth and overdevelopment of its low-lying coastal zones. He predicts it is only a matter of time before another storm devastates the Sunshine State and some of its major cities. And he adds that it is not the only state facing this threat: Overdevelopment and expanding populations across the U.S. mean natural disasters now pose a greater risk to many other places, such as Houston and Oklahoma City.

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