Published: August 2007
Learn More
In Learn More the National Geographic magazine team shares some of its best sources and other information to expand your knowledge of our featured subjects. Special thanks to the Research Division.
Related Links

Levee Investigation Teams' Reports
Much of the flooding New Orleans experienced during Hurricane Katrina was the result of breaches in its levee system along several canals. Reports on the failures from three large-scale investigations (one by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and two by independent teams of experts) are available on the Web.

Performance Evaluation of the New Orleans and Southeast Louisiana Hurricane Protection System." Final Report of the Interagency Performance Evaluation Task Force (IPET), Interim Final, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, March 26, 2007.

Seed, R. B., and others. "Investigation of the Performance of the New Orleans Flood Protection Systems in Hurricane Katrina on August 29, 2005." Independent Levee Investigation Team Final Report, July 31, 2006.

"The Failure of the New Orleans Levee System during Hurricane Katrina." Team Louisiana Forensic Levee Investigation, March 2007.

The Rise and Disappearance of Southeast Louisiana
Learn about the past, present, and future of Louisiana's coast in an animation created by Times-Picayune staff artist Dan Swenson.

Flash Flood
Watch the progress of Hurricane Katrina and the flooding of New Orleans over the course of a day in an animation created by Times-Picayune staff artist Dan Swenson.

Tropical Cyclone FAQ
What is the difference between a tropical cyclone and a hurricane? How many hurricanes have made landfall in the United States since 1851? When was a hurricane first given a man's name? Get the answers to these questions and much more from the Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory.

Greater New Orleans Community Data Center
Get background information, news, and maps on population and housing figures, neighborhoods, and rebuilding efforts.

The Katrina Index
The Brookings Institution's "Katrina Reading Room" offers detailed analyses of the emergency response to Hurricane Katrina and rebuilding efforts including a monthly publication full of facts and figures, the Katrina Index.


Colton, Craig. Unnatural Metropolis: Wresting New Orleans from Nature. Louisiana State University Press, 2005.

Hinshaw, Robert. Living With Nature's Extremes: The Life of Gilbert Fowler White. Johnson Books, 2006.

Houck, Oliver. "Can We Save New Orleans?" Tulane Environmental Law Journal (Spring 2006), 1-68.

Kelman, Ari. A River and Its City: The Nature of Landscape in New Orleans, second edition. University of California Press, 2006.

Kemp, John. New Orleans. Windsor Publications, Inc., 1981.

Lewis, Pierce. New Orleans: The Making of an Urban Landscape. Center for American Places, 2003.

On Risk and Disaster: Lessons from Hurricane Katrina. University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006.

Van Heerden, Ivor, and Mike Bryan. The Storm: What Went Wrong and Why During Hurricane Katrina. Viking, 2006.

NGS Resources

Gaines, Ernest J. "New Orleans: Home No More." National Geographic (August 2006), 42-65.

Hayden, Thomas. "Super Storms: No End in Sight." National Geographic (August 2006), 66-77.

Peters, Jennifer. "Storm Surge." National Geographic Explorer! (January/February 2006), 2-5.

Collins, Andrew. Violent Weather: Thunderstorms, Tornadoes, and Hurricanes. National Geographic Books, 2006.

Bourne, Joel K., Jr. "Loving Our Coasts to Death." National Geographic (July 2006), 60-87.

"Special Edition: Katrina." National Geographic (December 2005), 1-102.

Carroll, Chris. "Hope in Hell." National Geographic (December 2005), 6-15.

Carroll, Chris. "In Hot Water." National Geographic (August 2005), 72-85.

Oman, Anne H. Weather: Nature in Motion. National Geographic Books, 2005.

Bourne, Joel K., Jr. "Gone With the Water." National Geographic (October 2004), 88-105.

Geiger, Beth. "Hurricane Hunters." National Geographic Explorer! (September 2004), 14-19.

Skelton, Renee. "Flying Into the Eye of a … Hurricane!" National Geographic World (September 2002), 22-25.

Drye, Willie. Storm of the Century: The Labor Day Hurricane of 1935. National Geographic Books, 2002.

Williams, A. R. "After the Deluge: Central America's Storm of the Century." National Geographic (November 1999), 108-29.

McGoldrick, Jane R. "Caught in a Hurricane!" National Geographic World (September 1997), 14-18.

Smith, Mary G. "Retiring Into … a Hurricane." National Geographic (March 1996).

Canby, Thomas Y. Raging Forces: Earth in Upheaval. National Geographic Books, 1995.

Gore, Rick. "Andrew Aftermath." National Geographic (April 1993), 2-37.