As of early November, the National Centers for Environmental Information reported the United States sustained a total of 25 separate billion-dollar weather and climate disasters, surpassing the 18 documented in 2022. The weather events so far this year include 19 severe storms, two floods, a drought, a wildfire, a tropical cyclone, and a winter storm, which caused a total 464 deaths across the country and created unprecedented economic impact in the Northeast and southern California.
With many of these weather disasters including some form of excess water, communities are feeling the limitations of infrastructure, both in terms of capacity and design. Rainfall, storm surge, and inland floods are taxing infrastructure systems in ways we have not yet seen. Meanwhile, there are many cases in which there is a lack of dedicated stormwater funding resources to rebuild resilient infrastructure needed to limit further impacts of future severe weather events. Moreover, increasing state and federal regulatory measures create additional demand on resources to ensure the quality of our waterbodies remains safe for people and the environment. At Woodard & Curran, we are seeing some creative approaches to secure available funding resources through resiliency, vulnerability, state revolving funds, and disaster relief programs. Here are a few examples and insight from our funding team regarding what’s working in Massachusetts, Florida, and California.