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9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Social Studies, Earth and Space Sciences, Economics, Mathematics

Resource Types

  • Charts, Graphs, and Tables
  • Scientific Papers or Reports
  • Interactive Media

Regional Focus

North America, United States


Microsoft Excel

Billion-Dollar Weather and Climate Disasters

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  • This resource from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration details the financial costs and frequencies of extreme weather disasters exceeding one billion dollars in the United States since 1980.
  • The data provided is represented in maps, tables, and graphs and can easily be divided out by decade or event type for analysis.
  • The methodology for calculating and reporting the cost of damages is included, along with links to download some of the data.
Teaching Tips


  • This resource provides real world, current data on the economic repercussions of climate change. 
  • Analyzing the economic impact of climate change can be an effective way to garner support for climate action by individuals motivated by finances.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Learners should be familiar with the connections between global warming and extreme weather events.


  • Consider developing SAT/ACT practice questions on proportions and ratios using the data provided. For example, challenge students to examine decades during which the most damage occurred.
  • Before examining the data, have students predict the most costly decade or event type and explain their reasoning.
  • Download the data available to have students run statistical analyses for math, science, or statistics classes.
  • Additional resources that relate to the cost of climate change are The Cost of Carbon and Climate Economics.
Scientist Notes
This resource evaluates the risk from disasters, climatic events, and associated costs in the USA. It is a useful tool for developing and carrying out climate policies. The data source and the methodology used for the attribution and analysis of past and present risks have high levels of confidence. It is advised to use this resource in the classroom.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Mathematics
    • Statistics & Probability: Interpreting Categorical & Quantitative Data (9-12)
      • HSS.ID.A.3 Interpret differences in shape, center, and spread in the context of the data sets, accounting for possible effects of extreme data points (outliers).
    • Statistics & Probability: Making Inferences & Justifying Conclusions (9-12)
      • HSS.IC.B.6(+) Evaluate reports based on data (e.g., interrogate study design, data sources, randomization, the way the data are analyzed and displayed, inferences drawn and methods used; identify and explain misleading uses of data; recognize when arguments based on data are flawed).
  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-2. Analyze and interpret data on natural hazards to forecast future catastrophic events and inform the development of technologies to mitigate their effects.
      • HS-ESS3-1. Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the availability of natural resources, occurrence of natural hazards, and changes in climate have influenced human activity.
      • HS-ESS3-5. Analyze geoscience data and the results from global climate models to make an evidence-based forecast of the current rate of global or regional climate change and associated future impacts to Earth’s systems.
  • Related Resources


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