How Houston Can Become Stronger After Hurricane Harvey
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“How do you build it in the first place to be more resilient?” said Jeffrey Schlegelmilch, deputy director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University.”Those things take generations and require a long view that is much longer than quarterly earnings reports, or much longer than election cycles.”
Urban centers are denser and too heavily developed
Fifty four percent of the world’s citizens live in urban centers, and that figure is expected to rise to 66 percent by 2050. But even as living conditions are becoming denser, catastrophic weather events are growing in frequency and intensity, to the point that weather models based on historical patterns can no longer accurately forecast the future.
buy canada goose jacket We also increase canada goose clearance sale our vulnerability to natural disasters when we destroy the habitats that act as a natural barrier between human beings and extreme flooding. Hurricane Harvey’s floods were unprecedented, but the situation was made worse by Houston’s lack of zoning laws, and its consequent overdevelopment on wetlands that would have absorbed that storm water, says Sacoby Wilson, director of community engagement, environmental justice and health at the University of Maryland, College Park. buy canada goose jacket
canada goose clearance sale Failing infrastructure, the increasing density of cities and the growing frequency of extreme weather events create public health risks on a massive scale. In Houston, improperly maintained Superfund sites that is, profoundly polluted hazardous waste sites could not withstand the waters thatrose as high as streetlightsin some areas. In the wake of a flood, mold can bloom inside devastated structures, putting people at risk of allergies, asthma and other respiratory problems. 10, Canada Goose online knocked out power for between 60 and 80 percent of residents across the state, underlining the need for more diverse kinds of energy infrastructure. canada goose clearance sale
What’s needed in both Texas and Florida is a renewed commitment, at all levels of government, to zoning laws that allow natural habitats to defend human beings against torrential rains and create strong barriers between residential areas and toxic industrial complexes, experts say.
It may be too much to hope that policymakers in Washington will put politics aside to build with the next generation’s health and safety in mind. For instance, former President Barack Obama’s executive order establishing the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard, which required builders to consider climate change and rising sea levels, was rolled back by President Donald Trump 10 days before Harvey hit. are already exploring what it would mean to be resilient in the face of increasing risks. United by a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities organization, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, San Francisco, Minneapolis and other cities are trying to incorporate emergency preparedness, sustainability and community cohesion into every aspect of their infrastructure.
Canada Goose sale Organizations like 100 Resilient Cities are trying to help cities knit together far flung bureaucracies to imagine a more comprehensive perspective on urban planning. Canada Goose sale
canada goose clearance New York, another of the 100 Resilient Cities, has more than 8 million residents, about 400,000 of whom live in canada goose store areas that would be directly affected by rising sea levels and coastal flooding. In anticipation of more intense and more frequent floods, the city plans to clean cheap Canada Goose 100 industrial propertiesin areas prone to flooding, to reduce the risk of toxic chemicals spreading through neighborhoods in a storm surge. Planners also hope uk canada goose to integrate storm water drainage systems into all public projects, including streets, schools and public housing. canada goose clearance
Canada Goose online Companies, institutions and industries can take on this kind of thinking on a smaller scale especially since doing so is better for their employees and their bottom lines. For instance, one major lesson from Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and Hurricane Sandy on the East Coast was for hospitals to put their generators above ground level, so they can keep the power on even if water floods the basement or ground floor. In Houston, hospitals on the Texas Medical Center campus took several years andspent billions of dollarsto install “submarine doors” and other structural features to seal off their ground levels from incoming flooding, after hurricanes in the early 2000s destroyed decades of medical research, killed lab animals and forced dangerous hospital evacuations. Canada Goose online
canada goose store Schlegelmilch, the disaster preparedness expert, called these buy canada goose jacket cheap hopeful examples “pockets of preparedness,” but said the scales haven’t yet tipped toward a larger culture that prioritizes “resilience” in urban https://www.canadagooseoutletcoats.com planning. canada goose store
buy canada goose jacket cheap “It’s part of the conversation more than it used to be, but I don’t think anyone has cracked the code in terms of how to do it in a comprehensive way,” he said. One major reason: cost. buy canada goose jacket cheap
cheap Canada Goose “One of the challenges that people run up against is that you can take a long view, but then when it comes to actually doing it, it comes down to dollars and cents,” Schlegelmilch said. “It’s more expensive to do it, you have to choose areas that are going to be protected versus others that are too expensive to be protected, and there’s usually not one decision maker in this.” cheap Canada Goose
canada goose coats “It’s very difficult to convince the greater political community about the importance of this between events,” said Nicolette Louissaint, executive director of Healthcare Ready, an emergency preparedness nonprofit that coordinates medical Canada Goose sale care immediately after disasters. canada goose coats
canadian goose jacket Emergency managers working in communities hostile to the notion of climate change may find that using code terms like “natural disaster” or “extreme canada goose uk outlet event” may serve them well in the short term, Schlegelmilch said. But agreeing about the impact that climate change could have on communities will influence how much they’re willing to prepare for the future. canadian goose jacket
canada goose coats on sale “If storms are going to hold more rain as a result of climate change, then it means that your Canada Goose Jackets history of rainfall is not a good indicator of what your future rainfall is,” he said. “If sea levels are rising and if you’re five feet above sea level now, but you’re going to be one foot uk canada goose outlet above sea level for the next storm surge, it’s a different level of mitigation.” canada goose coats on sale
“It could be the difference between your sewage system and power plant being able to operate, and being knocked out of commission for days or even weeks on end,” he added.
Canada Goose Outlet There’s every reason to expect that the health consequences of climate change will affect millions of people in dense urban areas. New York City’s resiliency plan acknowledges that climate change endangers residents because of rising sea canada goose coats on sale levels, heat waves and flooding from extreme storms, and that areas with strong networks of schools, community Canada Goose Parka centers and safe streets will be better equipped to withstand the health challenges on the horizon. Canada Goose Outlet
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