How "levee wars" are making floods worse

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  • Published on:  Monday, August 6, 2018
  • Explained with a giant, scientific model.

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    Correction: At 4:27, we mistakenly wrote "Nijmegan" when it should be spelled "Nijmegen."

    In our latest Vox+ProPublica collaboration, we dive into how a structure that’s designed to protect us from floods, may actually be making them worse. High levees come at a high cost, often pushing water into communities that can’t afford the same protection. To demonstrate, we built a giant, scientific model of a river with levees — complete with adorable tiny houses.

    Be sure to check out ProPublica’s feature story here for more on America’s flood control problem: with the science explained here:

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  • Vox

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    Correction: At 4:27 we show the city name as "Nijmegan". It should be "Nijmegen".

  • Gay Rice

     (Jan 21, 2019)

    Youri Neeven its more triggering

  • Gay Rice

     (Jan 21, 2019)

    Vox also note that you said holland instead of the netherlands.

  • Moses Jonson

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    I find it strange states in america have not found any creative ideas to mitigate floods, they just let floods destroy their lively hoods and call it day (strange), they should come up with better ideas to mitigate this, in western europe so many governments and local governments have invested in tech to try and mitigate floods

  • ding dong

     (Jan 24, 2019)

    +Michael Loedel 🙄 I know right

  • Kevin Slater

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    "Don't build near rivers" - Holland

  • Kyotokyo The Asian

     (Jan 26, 2019)

    It’s called the netherlands goddammit

  • _Bob McCoy

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    *c l i m a t e c h a n g e*

  • Kevin Cline

     (Jan 24, 2019)

    +CasinoR I agree completely.... Everyone is trying to argue for the argument... Hahaha

  • karthika murugan

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    "dont be poor" :- rich people

  • Chris Townsend

     (Sep 25, 2018)

    Don’t buy a house built on a flood plane?

  • Nix Da Nope

     (Sep 23, 2018)


  • Michael Jay - Value Investing

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    Classic game theory states that each town will try to build the largest levee to protect themselves.

  • Anal Liberator

     (Sep 16, 2018)

    The game theoretical solution is always: The town with less money to use / lose with flooding builds a levee large enough that levee cost is matched with probably damage. The other town will then build a slightly taller levee than that.

  • Theeraphat Sunthornwit

     (Aug 22, 2018)

    Now this comment has 888 likes . Dont add more the number is cute

  • Specops915

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    Down here in El Paso, TX., we have setback levees in some areas of the Rio Grande river. The space between the river and the levee was made into park areas with bike riding lanes and other stuff that actually makes for a great place to hang out. Poseidon reclaims his territory from time to time but he's usually pretty chill with us. 🇺🇸🏞🇲🇽

  • Mahandra Raditya Putra

     (Jan 23, 2019)

    Never before I read such awesome term for flooding

  • Marcela Torres

     (Nov 26, 2018)

    Specops915 same with Dallas and the Trinity river :)

  • Jay Kay

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    Trump also wants a tall levee with Mexico.

  • TheCriminalViolin

     (Dec 9, 2018)

    Now see, you aren't wrong, it would solve the problem... but not in the way you may think. **flashforward to news stories around the world reciting how America blew itself up by stepping into the minefields to attempt to prove why that particular instance of border wallvee was the world's best for keeping out refugees** +vin 950

  • vin 950

     (Sep 23, 2018)

    A levee, a wall, some cannons, and a nice thick minefield should do the job.

  • John Lemon

     (Aug 6, 2018)

    *laughs in Dutch*

  • Sander Gaasbeek

     (Dec 22, 2018)

    G E K O L O N I S E E R D

  • alex derpy racc

     (Sep 26, 2018)


  • Nils10Ip

     (Aug 23, 2018)

    "In Holland for example."Thanks Vox for making people even more confused about the name of my country.If you're gonna call it by the name of a province in the Netherlands, than at least call it Gelderland.

  • TheCriminalViolin

     (Dec 9, 2018)