11. Building agricultural resilience to extreme floods in the United States

The United States’ agricultural sector is exposed to a range of natural hazards, with drought, floods, hurricanes, storms and wildfires causing large losses. Although drought is the main driver of crop insurance indemnity payments and accounts for a large share of disaster assistance over time (Figure 11.1), heavy losses and damage caused by the 2019 Midwestern Floods and Hurricane Florence in 2018 highlighted the importance of increasing resilience to extreme floods, the focus of this case study.1 Going forward, climate change is expected to increase the frequency and intensity of heavy rainfall events and the risk of floods impacting agriculture.

US producers have significant experience in managing the risks of natural hazard-induced disasters (NHID), and many are frequently exposed to flooding caused by heavy rainfall events and hurricanes. Farm-level capacity for managing that risk is also generally high. US producers are generally well-educated and innovative, adopting new developments in crop and livestock management, including precision agriculture technologies (Lowenberg-DeBoer and Erickson, 2019[1]; Schimmelpfennig, 2016[2]), conservation tillage practices (Claassen et al., 2018[3]), and weather and climate service tools (Haigh et al., 2018[4]), and employ a portfolio of measures to manage risk, including marketing contracts to protect against price fluctuations, production diversification, and off-farm sources of income (Prager et al., 2020[5]).

Nevertheless, more frequent and intense floods present challenges to even experienced farm managers due to the magnitude of the impacts and the cascading effects of multiple events. Building resilience to the risk of extreme floods will require public and private stakeholders to consider the risks that floods pose to the sector over the long term, and place a greater emphasis on what can be done ex ante to reduce risk exposure, increase preparedness for floods, and ensure a more resilient recovery.

Four general governance framework areas influence the US agricultural sector’s approach to managing natural disaster risk. These are the US frameworks for all-sector emergency management; governance arrangements for flood risk management; agricultural risk management policies; and other agricultural policies that can affect the sector’s capacity to manage floods – specifically, conservation policies. Different activities under each framework contribute to natural hazard risk management by helping producers to plan and prepare for, absorb the impact of, and recover from floods and other NHID, as well as provide the incentives and support for adapting and transforming in response to these events (Table 11.1).

Disaster risk management (DRM) in the United States is based on the principle of preparedness for all hazards. The system for disaster preparedness and response is outlined in the National Preparedness System (NPS) and its component planning frameworks, which guide how the whole community builds and sustains the capabilities that are needed to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from all hazards. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is the co-ordinating agency responsible for disaster preparedness, response and recovery, supported by other federal agencies and departments, together with local, state and tribal governments affected by an incident.

The approach for managing natural hazard risks to critical infrastructure2 – including in the food and agriculture sector – is outlined in the National Infrastructure Protection Plan. This emphasises the importance of public-private partnerships in the food and agriculture sector, given that critical infrastructure is almost entirely under private ownership.

Responsibility for flood risk management is shared across multiple federal, state, and local government agencies, while states and local governments are responsible for land use and development decisions in floodplains. At the national level, the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), FEMA and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) assist states and communities to implement measures to reduce flood damages and improve flood risk management. FEMA is responsible for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which makes flood insurance available, and also provides funding to states, territories, tribes, and local communities for flood hazard mitigation projects.

In the area of agricultural risk management, USDA offers a variety of risk management and disaster assistance programmes to help producers cope with production, financial and physical losses related to or caused by a NHID (Table 11.1). The Federal Crop Insurance Program, which is administered by USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA),3 offers subsidised insurance policies for both yield and revenue losses, and Whole-Farm Revenue Protection, which covers all commodities on the farm under one insurance policy. USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) administers the Emergency Disaster Loans programme, which provides low-interest loans to help producers recover from production and physical losses caused by drought, flooding, quarantine, or other NHID. FSA also administers four standing disaster programmes for livestock and trees, bushes, and vineyards (the Supplemental Agricultural Disaster Assistance Programs). At various times the United States has also provided ad hoc disaster assistance payments to producers.

USDA also has several permanent disaster assistance programmes that help producers to restore damaged farmland and infrastructure following natural disasters. FSA’s Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) assists landowners to restore agricultural land, including removing debris, restoring fences and conservation structures, and providing water for livestock in drought situations. USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service’s (NRCS) Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) programme assists communities to implement emergency recovery measures when a natural disaster causes serious damage to land and infrastructure.

Finally, NRCS also administers conservation programmes that directly target improved disaster prevention and mitigation. These three programmes – the Emergency Watershed Protection Program – Floodplain Easements Option (EWPP-FPE), the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program – Agricultural Land Easements (ACEP-ALE), and the Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations (WFPO) programme – provide support for preventative structural and non-structural measures to reduce flood damage.4 FSA and NRCS also administer conservation programmes that can indirectly improve producers’ capacity to manage the risk of NHID. For example, NRCS provides technical and financial assistance to producers to implement conservation measures, including land retirement programmes (e.g. the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP)) and programmes to encourage adoption of practices to reduce environmental pressures on working land (e.g. the Environmental Quality Incentives Program ‒ EQIP).

Resilience to NHID is an outcome of measures put in place before, during and after an extreme event, such as a flood. Measures undertaken by governments, farmers and other stakeholders at each stage of the DRM cycle play a role in helping the agricultural sector to absorb and recover from the impacts of natural hazards, and to adapt and transform in order to increase resilience to future disaster risks. Accordingly, activities under the four frameworks at each stage of the DRM cycle (risk identification, assessment and awareness; prevention and mitigation; preparedness; response and crisis management; and recovery and reconstruction) are considered to identify good practices that contribute to building resilience, as well as the opportunities to position the sector to better prevent and mitigate, and prepare for natural hazards, and flood risks in particular (Figure 11.2).

A shared understanding of natural disaster risks is important to encourage investments in natural disaster risk prevention, mitigation and preparedness by all stakeholders (OECD, 2020[8]). In the United States, initiatives at the national and state levels, including risk assessments, climate and natural hazard modelling, and foresight exercises play an important role in increasing risk awareness. All levels of government undertake all-hazard risk assessments strategically as part of the processes of the NPS. To do this, communities and governments at the national and state levels can use the National Risk and Capability Assessment tools developed by FEMA to identify hazards, their consequences, and the capabilities needed to manage them (FEMA, 2020[9]).

A number of agencies assess natural hazard- and climate-related risks, including:

  • The US Global Change Research Program’s National Climate Assessment, which analyses the effects of climate change on regions, sectors, and the natural and built environment, including on agriculture. The Fourth National Climate Assessment provides information on future climate scenarios and their associated risks and impacts, and examples of actions that communities are taking to reduce the risks associated with climate change, increase resilience, and improve livelihoods (USGCRP, 2018[10]).

  • The US Geological Survey’s Natural Hazards Mission Area conducts research and modelling on risks due to a range of natural hazards, including floods (USGS, 2020[35]).

  • FEMA identifies and maps flood hazards and disseminates flood risk information through floodplain maps.

Agricultural sector stakeholders can access more targeted information on climate and natural hazard risks through a range of public and private initiatives, including.

  • USDA’s Regional Climate Hubs develop and deliver region-specific and science-based information and resources to help USDA programme agencies (FSA, NRCS and RMA) and other stakeholders account for climate information in their planning processes (USDA, 2020[10]).

  • The Southeast Climate Consortium’s AgroClimate provides interactive tools and climate information to improve crop management decisions and reduce production risks associated with climate change and variability for south-eastern states (SECC, 2020[11]).

  • The Useful to Usable project brought together expertise in applied climatology, crop modelling, extension and other disciplines to improve the use and uptake of climate information for agricultural decision making (MRCC, 2017[12]).5

  • The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Research Program offers regional climate information to improve decision makers’ ability to prepare for and respond to short and long-term climate variability and change (GAO, 2018[13]).

Disaster impact data is a valuable risk management tool, as knowledge of past events can help identify vulnerabilities, and inform risk management policies and investments in risk prevention and mitigation. Information on some impacts of NHID on agriculture is available from a range of sources, including:

  • USDA’s crop insurance database offers an insight into production losses related to NHID, publishing data on US crop insurance pay-outs at the US state and county levels by crop and for more than 20 types of disasters.

  • The University of Florida’s Economic Impact Analysis Program provides estimates of the agricultural losses and damage associated with NHID in the state (FRED, 2018[14]).

  • Given the wide availability of resources to support risk identification and assessment, and the frequent occurrence of various natural hazards in the United States, US producers have a good understanding of the current risk exposure of their operations. However, the extent of their awareness of how this risk environment is changing – and the implications for their operations – is less certain (Chatrchyan et al., 2017[15]; Niles et al., 2019[16]; Prokopy et al., 2015[17]). Commentators have noted that producers consider short-run factors such as market and weather conditions to be more important for farm management and planning.

Ex ante investments in measures to prevent or mitigate natural disaster risk can reduce the cost of disaster response and recovery, by addressing underlying vulnerabilities and reducing natural hazard exposure. In the United States, a range of policies and programmes at the federal level aim to prevent and mitigate flood risks with structural measures such as levies.

  • Flood control: The USACE constructs flood control infrastructure and manages levee systems, while NRCS provides technical and financial assistance to support the construction of small levees and dams in rural areas. FEMA programmes offer incentives to communities and individuals to invest in flood risk prevention and mitigation.

  • Flood risk mitigation: New or substantially improved agricultural structures built on historic floodplains are required to meet FEMA’s building requirements, which include elevating or flood proofing to or above the base flood elevation.

Government agencies, producers and other stakeholders also recognise the role of soil health in mitigating the impacts of floods on farms by improving water storage, infiltration and flow, as well as the opportunities for nature-based solutions to mitigate flood risks.

  • Conservation practices: USDA provides financial and technical assistance to farms to support the adoption of conservation practices on working land and for land retirement. Eligibility for most federal commodity programme payments, including crop insurance premium subsidies, is subject to the recipients having a farm-based conservation plan to protect highly erodible cropland and wetlands.

  • Nature-based solutions: NRCS funds land use restrictions in floodplains and to restore and enhance floodplains through the EWPP-FPE programme.

  • Soil health initiatives: Technical and financial support to improve soil health is available from various sources, including NRCS’s Soil Health Initiative, the Soil Health Partnership (SHP), and the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) Soil Health Champions Network.

Producers can also obtain insurance to mitigate the financial impacts of NHID, including floods. The Federal Crop Insurance Program offers subsidised insurance policies for yield and revenue losses caused by natural hazards, and is highly regarded by public and private stakeholders as the primary policy tool for mitigating natural hazard risks.

Disaster preparedness and planning are crucial for effective crisis management. Preparedness activities are an important and necessary complement to risk prevention and mitigation efforts, such that when NHID inevitably occur and disrupt agricultural activities, public and private stakeholders have the networks, capacities and resources in place to manage a crisis effectively, minimise the disruptions to agricultural activities, and ensure a quicker and more resilient recovery (UNISDR, 2015[18]).

DRM in the United States is based on the principle of preparedness for all hazards. Rather than plan for every possible hazard, the NPS is based on capabilities-based planning, namely identifying and building the required capabilities that will help the whole community to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from multiple hazards. Disaster preparedness is also supported by “table top” exercises at the national and state levels. For example, the Food and Agriculture critical infrastructure sector participates in exercises to test the effectiveness of resilience procedures in the sector (FDA, USDA and DHS, 2015[19]).

US agricultural sector stakeholders value developing relationships and networks for disaster preparedness and capacity building before disasters occur. At the national level, the Food and Agriculture critical infrastructure sector enhances collaboration and communication between government agencies, and owners and operators of food and agriculture critical infrastructure, and with stakeholders in other critical infrastructure sectors. Various multi-state consortia are also in place to build preparedness capabilities at the state level, maximise resource sharing, and minimise duplication of effort, including:

  • The Multi-State Partnership for Security in Agriculture, a collaboration between state departments of agriculture, state veterinarians, animal health departments, Homeland Security advisors, and emergency management divisions of 15 Midwestern states to support emergency preparedness and response (Multi-State Partnership, 2016[20]).

  • The Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN), a collaborative multi-state effort between USDA’s National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA), NOAA, land-grant colleges and universities, and the Cooperative Extension System (CES) across the country. supports local extension agents with research-based education and resources on disaster preparation and mitigation, and helps them to build relationships with their local and state emergency management (EDEN, 2018[21])

Producers can access information on natural hazard preparedness – and on flood and hurricane preparedness in particular – from a range of sources, including USDA and its programme agencies. Region-specific information is available through the USDA Climate Hubs and state departments of agriculture. In particular, locally based organisations, such as co-operative extension agents, Farm Bureaus and local USDA staff are trusted sources of information due to having local knowledge of issues and established relationships with community members.

Effective crisis management and disaster response hinge on all actors knowing their responsibilities in the event of an emergency and communicating effectively, with the public sector taking a leadership role when the private sector is unable to cope.

Alerts and real-time information on imminent hazards are provided by several agencies. For example, NOAA develops and issues forecasts, watches and warnings for floods through the National Weather Service (NWS), and for hurricanes through the National Hurricane Center. Information on drought is provided weekly through the US Drought Monitor, a map that shows which parts of the United States are in drought, and the severity of drought conditions.

For disasters requiring federal co-ordination, the immediate response is generally guided by the National Response Framework (NRF). While FEMA has primary responsibility for co-ordinating disaster response, USDA is responsible for co-ordinating federal support to provide nutrition assistance; provide technical expertise in support of animal and agricultural emergency management; and ensure the safety and defence of food supply, among other functions. At the local level, USDA programme agencies focus on providing information on disaster assistance programmes to affected producers. USDA is also supported by other organisations, including the Farm Bureau and conservation districts, and local extension agents.

US disaster frameworks also recognise that during disasters, the private sector can contribute resources, capabilities, and expertise in support of disaster response and recovery operations, and help ensure business continuity. Before, during and after disasters, FEMA co-ordinates with the private sector through the National Business Emergency Operations Center (NBEOC),6 a virtual platform for two-way information sharing between public and private sector stakeholders.

Following a NHID, recovery and reconstruction efforts offer an opportunity for public and private stakeholders to “build back better”7 by addressing underlying gaps in resilience, and building the capacities needed to manage natural hazards in the future (FAO, IFAD and WFP, 2019[22]). This requires all stakeholders – including producers – to learn from NHID in order to adjust DRM frameworks, policy measures and on-farm strategies with a view towards long-term resilience (OECD, 2014[23]; OECD, 2020[8]).

Recovery from disasters in the United States is guided by the National Disaster Recovery Framework, which emphasises pre-disaster recovery planning and preparedness, and outlines co-ordinating structures, roles and responsibilities of different levels of government in short- and long-term recovery efforts. Federal support for recovery is organised around Recovery Support Functions, with federal disaster assistance made available to individuals, state and local governments, and non-government entities, primarily through programmes administered by FEMA.

For many US producers, financial concerns are the most important barrier to – and priority for – recovery after a NHID (Wiener, Álvarez-Berríos and Lindsey, 2020[24]). Producers can access financial support through a range of federal disaster assistance programmes. Assistance is received most quickly through the Federal Crop Insurance Program, and indemnities can be important for addressing cash flow constraints that impede the restoration of farm operations. Ad hoc disaster assistance has also been provided in recent years in response to hurricanes, wildfires, floods, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, and snowstorms, despite the intention to move away from such programmes (Figure 11.3).8 Cost-shared assistance for farmland rehabilitation and watershed protection is also available several programmes, including FSA’s ECP and NRCS’s EWP programme. USDA also uses some existing conservation programmes to assist with rehabilitating land following natural disasters, for example, special EQIP sign-ups for producers in hurricane- or flood-affected areas (Stubbs, 2020[25]).

In line with the four Principles for Effective Disaster Risk Management for Resilience in agriculture (Chapter 3), disaster risk governance and policy measures in the United States offer many examples of good practices for building the agricultural sector’s resilience to natural hazards – and for floods in particular – as well as some challenges that provide opportunities for future improvement.

  • Agricultural risk management and disaster assistance policies are comprehensive, but are undermined by ad hoc disaster assistance. In the event of a NHID, producers have access to a range of programmes that provide compensation for losses, including crop insurance, Emergency Disaster Loans and the Supplemental Agricultural Disaster Assistance Programs. However, the recent return to providing ad hoc disaster assistance undermines the ex ante framework established by these policies, and in turn, producers’ incentives to adjust their operations in response to evolving natural hazard risks.

  • Resilience objectives could be better integrated into existing farm safety net programmes in the context of the sector’s changing exposure to natural hazards under climate change. This would send a clearer signal to producers about the need to adapt, and to invest in and build capacities for mitigating the risks and impacts of floods and other natural hazards. To some extent, the USDA Climate Hubs are progressing this through their work with USDA agencies, including to better integrate consideration of climate change impacts into farm programmes. However, these links could be strengthened, including by increasing the profile of the Climate Hubs among all stakeholders. It is also important for that stakeholders acknowledge the need for programmes that complement risk coping policies such as crop insurance, and place a greater emphasis on increasing the utility of programmes that promote adaptation

  • Producers and other stakeholders have access to extensive science-based and targeted information and tools for adapting to climate and natural hazard risks. This information is tailored to the needs of the sector, and by region and by type of natural hazard, and includes information and tools developed by the USDA Climate Hubs, universities and government agencies, as well as tools and services offered by the private sector. This encourages producers and other stakeholders to consider the risk landscape over the long term by helping them to understand the risks that they face from natural hazards, and supports risk-informed decision-making. An important feature of many of these initiatives is that they place significant emphasis on the co-production of information and tools by involving end-users in their development, to enhance their usability and relevance, and on tailoring climate information to meet the needs of producers in specific regions.

  • However, there are opportunities to increase awareness of the risks posed by natural hazards, and the risks of extreme floods in particular. Efforts to collect data on production losses and damage to farm infrastructure and equipment could be extended, and this information could be made publicly available, in order to help identify vulnerabilities, guide investments in risk prevention and mitigation, and inform revisions to disaster assistance programmes. Trusted non-government organisations, such as the Farm Bureau could also play a larger role in promoting natural hazard risk awareness to improve the preparedness of their stakeholders.

  • Conservation programmes and public-private initiatives help to mitigate flood risks and impacts on production. The various soil health initiatives led by producers (e.g. the SHP), conservation districts and NRCS share a number of strengths, in that they engage with, and benefit from the support of, a diverse range of stakeholders; support on-farm experimentation with adaptation; prioritise communication with producers, including via peer networks; and build the evidence base on the economic and environmental benefits of soil health practices, thereby addressing an important information constraint to their adoption on farm and lowering the risks to farmers from changing farming practices. Nature-based solutions to mitigate flood risks and impacts receive technical and financial support through USDA’s conservation programmes.

  • However, stakeholders under-emphasise ex ante measures to prevent and mitigate natural hazard risks. The Climate Hubs face significant constraints in terms of funding and staffing levels, despite their key role in delivering science-based services and tools on climate and natural hazard adaptation, and demand for their programmes and products (Croft et al., 2020[27]; Elliot, 2020[28]). Disaster assistance programmes in the 2018 Farm Bill – the key policy framework for the sector – prioritise support that helps producers to cope with the impacts of natural disasters such as floods despite the importance of helping the sector adapt or transform in the wake of flood events. Most of these programmes also lack guidance on – or any requirement to take – actions to reduce natural hazard exposure and vulnerability.

  • Agricultural risk management policies may also discourage producers from adapting their enterprises to prevent and mitigate the risks posed by floods and other natural hazards in the long term. For example, crop insurance is the primary policy tool for mitigating natural hazard risk for many public and private stakeholders, and the programme has important strengths. However, subsidies (around 60% of the premium on average) mean that producer-paid premiums do not reflect the true risk premium, which could affect farming decisions and induce maladaptive practices.

  • Formal networks build disaster preparedness and response capacities. At the national level, the Critical Infrastructure Sectors framework and NBEOC are valued by agricultural stakeholders for connecting public and private actors before a hazard occurs, and for their role in improving the effectiveness of disaster response and supporting business continuity. At the state level, networks such as EDEN and the Multi-State Partnership also build disaster preparedness and response capabilities, and minimise duplication of effort across states.

  • However, more could be done to support a resilient recovery by incorporating the principle of “building back better” after a NHID into existing disaster assistance programmes. This includes providing guidance on on-farm options to reduce natural hazard exposure and vulnerability, securing funding for conservation programmes that support farmland rehabilitation and future flood risk mitigation, and removing constraints that limit how flexibly funding can be used.

Disaster risk governance, policy measures and on-farm strategies in the United States offer many examples of good practices for building the agricultural sector’s resilience to NHID, but there are some concrete actions that would better position the sector to prevent, mitigate, prepare for and manage the risks of floods and other natural hazards.

  • Policies should provide clear signals for producers to manage risks and develop their capacity to plan for, absorb, recover from, and more successfully adapt to natural hazard risk: Risk management programmes could be reviewed for their effects on farm-level incentives to prevent and mitigate risk in the long term, and for opportunities to integrate resilience considerations. USDA conservation programmes could also be leveraged to improve ex ante natural hazard risk management and support a more resilient recovery.

  • Raise the profile of programmes and tools that support adaptation to climate and natural hazard risks: Tools and programmes that support adaptation to climate and natural hazard risks receive relatively less support than risk coping tools, with many subject to funding limitations and other constraints that limit use, despite high demand for these resources. Raising the profile of these programmes and strengthening the links with risk coping tools could improve outcomes.

  • Policy makers should engage more closely with trusted stakeholders to promote on-farm efforts to build resilience: Industry organisations and locally-based stakeholders such as the Farm Bureau, county extension service and conservation districts are important and trusted sources of information for the US agricultural sector. Policymakers should engage closely with these trusted stakeholders to promote the benefits of prevention and mitigation to reduce exposure to natural hazard risk, as well as to better understand farm-level constraints to adopting practices that improve farm resilience.


[15] Chatrchyan, A. et al. (2017), “United States agricultural stakeholder views and decisions on climate change”, WIREs Climate Change, Vol. 8/5, https://doi.org/10.1002/wcc.469.

[3] Claassen, R. et al. (2018), “Tillage Intensity and Conservation Cropping in the United States”, No. EIB-197, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, https://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/pub-details/?pubid=90200.

[27] Croft, G. et al. (2020), Climate Change Adaptation: U.S. Department of Agriculture, CRS Report R46454, Congressional Research Service, https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/R/R46454 (accessed on 18 February 2021).

[21] EDEN (2018), Extension Disaster Education Network: Reducing the Impact of Disasters through Education, Extension Disaster Education Network, https://eden.lsu.edu/ (accessed on 22 September 2019).

[28] Elliot, S. (2020), Regional Hubs Put Climate Resilience Theory to Practice, USDA, https://www.usda.gov/media/blog/2020/04/09/regional-hubs-put-climate-resilience-theory-practice (accessed on 23 February 2021).

[22] FAO, IFAD and WFP (2019), Strengthening resilience for food security and nutrition: A Conceptual Framework for Collaboration and Partnership among the Rome-based Agencies, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP), https://docs.wfp.org/api/documents/WFP-0000062320/download/.

[19] FDA, USDA and DHS (2015), Food and Agriculture Sector-Specific Plan, Food and Drug Administration, United States Department of Agriculture and the Department of Homeland Security, https://www.cisa.gov/sites/default/files/publications/nipp-ssp-food-ag-2015-508.pdf.

[9] FEMA (2020), National Risk and Capability Assessment, https://www.fema.gov/national-risk-and-capability-assessment.

[14] FRED (2018), Disaster Impact Analysis, https://fred.ifas.ufl.edu/economicimpactanalysis/Disasterimpactanalysis/ (accessed on 20 September 2019).

[13] GAO (2018), Climate Change Funding, GAO-18-223 report to the Chairman, Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, House of Representatives, United States Government Accountability Office, https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/691572.pdf.

[29] Gray, E. and K. Baldwin (2021), Building the resilience of the United States’ agricultural sector to extreme floods.

[7] Gray, E. and K. Baldwin (2021), “Building the resilience of the United States’ agricultural sector to extreme floods”, OECD Food, Agriculture and Fisheries Papers, No. 161, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/edb6494b-en.

[4] Haigh, T. et al. (2018), “Provision of Climate Services for Agriculture: Public and Private Pathways to Farm Decision-Making”, Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, Vol. 99, pp. 1781–1790, https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-17-0253.1.

[1] Lowenberg-DeBoer, J. and B. Erickson (2019), “Setting the Record Straight on Precision Agriculture Adoption”, Agronomy Journal, Vol. 111/4, pp. 1552-1569, https://doi.org/doi:10.2134/agronj2018.12.0779.

[12] MRCC (2017), Useful to Usable, Midwestern Regional Climate Center, https://mrcc.illinois.edu/U2U/.

[20] Multi-State Partnership (2016), Multi-State Partnership for Security in Agriculture, http://mjndvm96.magix.net/index.htm.

[16] Niles, M. et al. (2019), “Seeing is not always believing: crop loss and climate change perceptions among farm advisors”, Environmental Research Letters, Vol. 14, https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/aafbb6.

[26] OECD (2020), Producer and Consumer Support Estimates, OECD Agriculture Statistics (database), https://doi.org/10.1787/466c3b98-en.

[8] OECD (2020), Strengthening Agricultural Resilience in the Face of Multiple Risks, OECD Publishing, Paris, https://dx.doi.org/10.1787/2250453e-en.

[23] OECD (2014), Recommendation of the Council on the Governance of Critical Risks, OECD Publishing, Paris, http://www.oecd.org/gov/risk/recommendation-on-governance-of-critical-risks.htm.

[5] Prager, D. et al. (2020), “Farm Use of Futures, Options, and Marketing Contracts”, No. EIB No. 219, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, https://www.ers.usda.gov/webdocs/publications/99518/eib-219.pdf?v=8904.4 (accessed on 20 January 2021).

[17] Prokopy, L. et al. (2015), “Farmers and climate change: a cross-national comparison of beliefs and risk perceptions in high-income countries”, Environmental Management, Vol. 56, pp. 492-504, https://doi.org/10.1007/s00267-015-0504-2.

[30] Reidmiller, D. et al. (eds.) (2018), Impacts, Risks, and Adaptation in the United States: Fourth National Climate Assessment, Volume II, U.S. Global Change Research Program, Washington, D.C., https://doi.org/10.7930/NCA4.2018.

[2] Schimmelpfennig, D. (2016), “Farm Profits and Adoption of Precision Agriculture”, No. ERR-217, October 2016, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service, https://www.ers.usda.gov/publications/pub-details/?pubid=80325.

[11] SECC (2020), AgroClimate, Southeast Climate Consortium (SECC), http://agroclimate.org/.

[25] Stubbs, M. (2020), Emergency Assistance for Agricultural Land Rehabilitation, CRS Report R42854, Congressional Research Service, https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R42854.pdf.

[18] UNISDR (2015), Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015 - 2030, United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, https://www.unisdr.org/files/43291_sendaiframeworkfordrren.pdf (accessed on 22 August 2018).

[10] USDA (2020), USDA Climate Hubs, https://www.climatehubs.usda.gov/ (accessed on 29 March 2020).

[6] USDA RMA (2021), Cause of Loss Historical Data Files, https://www.rma.usda.gov/SummaryOfBusiness/CauseOfLoss (accessed on 11 February 2021).

[31] USGS (2020), USGS Flood Information, https://www.usgs.gov/mission-areas/water-resources/science/usgs-flood-information?qt-science_center_objects=0#qt-science_center_objects.

[24] Wiener, S., N. Álvarez-Berríos and A. Lindsey (2020), “Opportunities and Challenges for Hurricane Resilience on Agricultural and Forest Land in the U.S. Southeast and Caribbean”, Sustainability, Vol. 12/1364, https://doi.org/10.3390/su12041364.


← 1. See Gray and Baldwin (2021[7]).

← 2. Critical infrastructure is defined as the assets, systems, and networks that underpin American Society.

← 3. RMA administers the federal crop insurance programme in partnership with private insurance companies, which share a percentage of the risk of loss or the opportunity for gain associated with each policy. The delivery costs of private insurance companies are also subsidised.

← 4. A floodplain or flowage easement is a right granted by a landowner to allow the land to be temporarily inundated.

← 5. The Useful to Usable project is a collaboration between USDA’s National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA), nine Midwestern universities, NOAA’s Regional Climate Centres, and the National Drought Mitigation Center.

← 6. Participation in the NBEOC is voluntary and open to all organisations with significant and multistate geographical footprints in the private sector.

← 7. Building back better is defined as using the recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction phases after a disaster to increase the resilience of nations and communities through integrating disaster risk reduction measures into the restoration of physical infrastructure and societal systems, and into the revitalisation of livelihoods, economies and the environment (UNISDR, 2015[18]).

← 8. The authorisation of the Supplemental Agricultural Disaster Assistance Programs in the 2008 and 2014 Farm Bills, as well as expanded crop insurance over time – both in terms of commodity coverage and higher premium subsidies – and the availability of NAP policies, were intended to reduce the need for ad hoc disaster assistance (Stubbs, 2020[25]).

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