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Latest Floodplain Stories

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2007-02-02 00:50:00

WASHINGTON -- Maps used to calculate flood danger in the U.S. rely on data that are decades out of date, according to a report that calls for a new national program to remap land levels. The National Research Council on Thursday proposed an "Elevation for the Nation" program to produce up-do-date data. The most immediate need is for the Federal Emergency Management Agency's flood mapping program. Those maps are used by mortgage companies and FEMA's National Flood Insurance Program to...

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2006-10-24 16:35:00

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- The general disappearance of cougars from a portion of Zion National Park in the past 70 years has allowed deer populations to dramatically increase, leading to severe ecological damage, loss of cottonwood trees, eroding streambanks, and declining biodiversity. This "trophic cascade" of environmental degradation, all linked to the decline of a major predator, has been shown in a new study to affect a broad range of terrestrial and aquatic species, according to scientists...

2005-09-30 17:06:44

For many areas of the West, the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMS) overestimate the amount of land area within the 100-year floodplain. New research suggests a way to improve the maps. The new three-pronged approach combines a new numerical computer model with two additional methods, satellite-image analysis and field observations. Each method serves as a check on the other two. The research team focused on the floodplains for a 10-year flood, a 100-year...

2005-06-20 03:15:00

Understanding how the Amazon River varies in time, what causes those variations, and how sensitive it will be to ongoing, and accelerating, deforestation is a focus of study for scientists at the Woods Hole Research Center. Population and development pressures in the last several decades have led to significant areas of deforestation in the Amazon, most in the eastern and southern portion of the basin. By using a combination of numerical models and data from several disciplines to assess the...


Word of the Day
attercop
  • A spider.
  • Figuratively, a peevish, testy, ill-natured person.
'Attercop' comes from the Old English 'atorcoppe,' where 'atter' means 'poison, venom' and‎ 'cop' means 'spider.' 'Coppa' is a derivative of 'cop,' top, summit, round head, or 'copp,' cup, vessel, which refers to 'the supposed venomous properties of spiders,' says the OED. 'Copp' is still found in the word 'cobweb.'
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