Resilience


FEMA and HUD Budgets are Vital for Disaster and Climate Preparedness

, lead economist and climate policy manager

Last year’s record-breaking disasters—including hurricanes, wildfires and floods—were a reminder of how climate change and faulty development policies are colliding to create dangerous and costly outcomes for the American public. While much attention is focused on post-disaster recovery, we need to invest much more in preparing for disasters before they happen. The good news is that the omnibus budget deal recently passed by Congress appropriated significant funding for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to help foster community resilience, in many cases undoing steep cuts that had been proposed by the Trump administration. Read more >

FEMA News Photo
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How One Utility Is Using Tax Reform to Hide a Billion-Dollar Climate Problem

, Energy analyst

Picture this: You’ve just completed a decade of investing about $3 billion of your customers’ dollars into keeping the lights on when severe weather strikes. Now Hurricane Irma’s blasted through, 90 percent of your customers were left in the dark, and the restoration and repair costs you intend to bill them are estimated at $1.3 billion.

That’s right. A storm you’ve spent a decade preparing for is looking like it’ll end up costing nearly half as much as the preparations themselves. Worse, there’s no reason to think it won’t keep happening again, and again, and again, as climate change drives the intensity of these storms ever higher.

Bit of a thorny customer relations problem, that one.

Read more >

NOAA 2017
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Damage from Hurricane Sandy in Mantoloking, New Jersey in 2012.

An Innovative Way to Encourage Disaster Preparedness: FEMA’s Public Assistance Deductible

, lead economist and climate policy manager

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recently outlined a new framework for encouraging states to invest in disaster resilience and thus limit the growing costs of disasters.

Today is the comment deadline for the ‘Public Assistance deductible,’ a concept that can help protect communities and ensure federal taxpayer dollars are spent wisely. The Union of Concerned Scientists is filing comments supportive of this idea, with some important recommendations for improvements. Read more >

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Happy Cow Creamery, a pasture-based dairy and creamery located in South Carolina, produces dairy products processed on farm and sold into regional markets and through an on farm market. Photo: Climate Listening Project

Climate Change, Resilience, and the Future of Food

Laura Lengnick, , UCS

The United States food system has proven remarkably adaptable over the last 150 years, producing an abundant supply of food, feed, and fiber crops for national and international markets amidst dynamic social change, and despite dramatic natural resource variability across North America. Read more >

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Pie and Praise: Why I’m Especially Thankful for California’s Leadership on Climate This Thanksgiving

, Western states senior climate analyst

Following our annual pre-Thanksgiving tradition, my husband and I gathered with friends around a long wooden table on Sunday night to eat homemade pies and share what we’re thankful for this year. Some said family, others their health or jobs. Read more >

California Department of Water Resources
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