Monetary losses from landslides come from the destruction of infrastructure, homes and businesses; loss of life; disruption of transportation routes; disruption and contamination of water supplies; and the difficulty of both removing and stabilizing landslide material. Even a small landslide that damages a few homes can cost millions of dollars. Losses from landslides in the United States were estimated in 1980 to exceed $1 billion per year. More recently, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated annual losses to be between $2 billion and $4 billion per year. However, landslide costs across the country are not currently tracked or measured in a uniform way by any one agency, so this figure is likely to be an underestimate.
- Landslides 101 (Webpage), U.S. Geological Survey
Basic information on landslides, where they occur, and why they are important.
- Estimating the costs of landslide damage in the United States (Report), U.S. Geological Survey
This 1980 report provides the most recent formal estimate of landslide damages in the United States.
- Landslide Loss Reduction: A Guide for State and Local Government Planning (Guidebook), Federal Emergency Management Agency
A practical, politically feasible guide for State and local officials involved in landslide hazard mitigation