Hurricanes are among the most common natural disasters and capable of taking lives and leveling buildings. However, relatively little is known about the economic consequences of these powerful storms. While researchers have long been interested in the relationship between economic and natural systems. It is only recently that we have been able to truly engage in understanding this relationship.

Using meteorological data on storm tracks, combined with a structural wind field model, we measure county-level exposure to hurricane-force winds for the United States between 1990 and 2015. Using this measure of exposure we seek to understand the effects of hurricanes on local economic activity, as well as the response of affected populations to these events.

This project furthers our understanding of the distributional consequences of hurricanes, identifying vulnerable populations, and understanding the mechanisms through which resilient populations have managed the economic consequences of these events. Understanding the answer to these questions is particularly important in light of projections that suggest an increase in high-intensity storms as a result of climate change.