Archive for the ‘Natural Disaster Response’ category

By Dena Adler Last month the Midwest faced historic floods that devastated rural communities, drowned farms, contaminated water supplies, and resulted in billions of dollars in damages. As climate change exacerbates the risk of these catastrophic flooding events in the Midwest and throughout the U.S., a growing number of citizens will need support rebuilding their […]

By Dena Adler Since September 2017, Congress has kept the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) afloat with a series of short-term extensions, repeatedly punting on a valuable opportunity to issue a long-term reauthorization and reform the program to better protect communities from the increased risks of flooding spurred by climate change. But  the federal government […]

By Dena Adler The escalating costs of damages from extreme weather events, many exacerbated by climate change, makes poignant a question with a serious price tag: who will be on the hook to pay for climate damages? In 2018, a host of lawsuits wound their way through the courts seeking an answer, including several from […]

By Dena Adler New research from the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) reveals that nearly half of states do not have regulatory or statutory requirements for sellers to disclose a property’s history of flood damages to a homebuyer. As a consequence, many homeowners may never learn their […]

by Jessica Wentz On October 9, 2017, the Tubbs Fire ripped through Sonoma County, California, destroying nearly 5,000 homes and killing 22 people. It was the most destructive wildfire in California’s history and the largest urban conflagration in the United States since the 1906 San Francisco earthquake fires. And it was only one of approximately […]

By William Omorogieva* The intensity of recent hurricanes and the damage they have caused in America have garnered lots of national news coverage. After Hurricane Katrina, it became evident how a lack of planning for natural disasters can have dangerous and deadly consequences. However, often hidden from public view is the struggle that some of […]

by Justin Gundlach As a spate of disasters in the past few months has made painfully clear to people in Texas, Florida, Louisiana, Puerto Rico, and northern California, designing the electric grid to be reliable at all times requires anticipating and preparing for destructive hazards that can interrupt its operation. That is, reliability requires resilience, […]

By Romany Webb Nearly three weeks after being hit by Hurricane Maria, 90 percent of Puerto Rico remains without electricity. While the island’s nine key generating facilities were not seriously damaged by Maria, they cannot be used, as the infrastructure required to transfer electricity to customers no longer exists. The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority […]

By Richmund Sta. Lucia In a span of just three weeks, two hurricanes hit the U.S. mainland causing severe impacts on human life and property. On August 25, Hurricane Harvey devastated Texas with unprecedented flooding and claimed a current total of 82 lives. The death toll from Hurricane Irma, which ravaged Florida last week, has […]

By Dena Adler It has been widely reported that Hurricanes Harvey and Irma inundated industrial plants, wastewater treatment plants, and Superfund sites, causing a stew of toxic chemicals and sewage to leak into floodwaters and releasing almost 1 million pounds of seven deadly pollutants into the air. The Union of Concerned Scientists, for instance, has […]

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