• The Effect of Urbanization on the Intensity of Heavy Rainfall in the Midwestern United States

      Jessup, Stephen; Kremer, Adrianna; State University of New York College at Brockport (2020-09-15)
      In recent years, the global population has become more concentrated in cities and this urbanization has influenced a number of changes in climate and land use. While some studies have examined how urbanization impacts precipitation, most of these studies have examined precipitation patterns rather than intensity. Increases in the intensity of precipitation can increase the risk of flooding and flash floods, which can have devastating impacts. Stage IV multi-sensor precipitation data was used to examine heavy rainfall events during the warm-season (May-September) from 2003-2017 in Midwestern cities to examine how urbanization influences rainfall intensity. NCEI precipitation data was also used to create a climatology regarding warm-season precipitation. Results show that in most cases, areas downwind of the urban environment tend to experience heavier rainfall, thus it is likely these areas experience a greater rainfall intensity. Further research regarding specific parameters of rainfall would be beneficial in understand the precipitation modification that occurs due to urbanization.