Volume VIII also would be strengthened by adding an objective, candid discussion of the main limitations of the risk and reliability models used therein, and areas for future improvement.

More thorough discussion of all of Volume VIII’s main findings about future vulnerability to the New Orleans region—especially in layman’s terms that are understandable to most decision makers, citizens, and business owners who wish to read the document—is necessary to help them better understand future vulnerabilities and to assist them in their relocation and reconstruction decisions.

Interagency Coordination on Flood Inundation Maps

In addition to flood inundation maps contained in IPET Volume VIII, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Hurricane Center also produce flood inundation maps for U.S. coastal regions. Although IPET, FEMA, and NOAA have different objectives and product needs, these agencies should engage in ongoing communication and coordinate to ensure consistency among their methods and the resulting products.

Full Draft Final Report

Volume I of the IPET report, entitled Executive Summary and Overview, contains much interesting and useful information, and readers will turn to it expecting to see primary findings and recommendations. The Volume I Executive Summary is well written, interesting, and informative. There are, however, many disconnections between the Executive Summary in Volume I, and the organization and contents of the rest of the report (Vols. II-VIII). This affects the clarity of key findings and conclusions and diminishes the value of the IPET project.

The IPET and the Department of the Army should enlist the services of a firm that specializes in technical writing of scientific and engineering reports to produce a final, summary document of the entire IPET report. The summary should be written in layman’s terminology in order to communicate clearly the IPET study results to decision makers and citizens.


Many of the “lessons learned” in the Hurricane Katrina experience, and presented in this report, represent knowledge widely recognized and

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