Please invest in Our Daily Planet today, by making a one time or monthly contribution.
We do not charge our readers a subscription fee for our content. We want to continue to grow our readership, particularly among millennials and public servants. Voluntary contributions from readers will help us employ interns and freelance journalists, expand our content, and reach a larger audience.
Eight years ago Superstorm Sandy killed 44 people in New York City, cost the City approximately $19 billion in damages and lost economic activity according to cityofficials, and left more than 69,000 residences damaged. Inside Climate News’ Kristoffer Tigue reported that earlier this year the New York state legislature was poised to pass a $3b bill called the “Restore Mother Nature Bond Act,” which would have allowed the state to issued bonds to help fund projects specifically geared toward reducing New York’s flood risk. But because of $30B funding shortfalls due to the COVID pandemic, Governor Cuomo said it wouldn’t be “financially prudent” to pursue the bond legislation until next year.
Many people whose homes were destroyed by Sandy had to live in a hotel for years until their homes were finally rebuilt. If another storm like that were to hit now, when many of the city’s low-income residents are behind on mortgage payments, if their homes are destroyed they could find themselves homeless — under water literally and financially. The Union of Concerned Scientists report found that no homes in wealthy Manhattan were at risk of repeated flooding by 2045 but in Queens, a borough with a much higher percentage of low income and minority residents than Manhattan, thousands of homes are at risk of chronic flooding by then.
Many advocates worry that other states will follow New York’s lead and because of the COVID funding crunch back away from commitments to make similar investments in climate resilience. Unfortunately, the Governor’s request for $30b in federal assistance for New York related to the coronavirus is caught up in the Congressional stalemate with the White House over further pandemic-related stimulus funding for cities and states. On the other hand, state officials believe that if former Vice President Biden wins the Presidential election, a Biden administration would be receptive to providing federal aid to New York for climate adaptation projects as long as the state is willing to pay for a share of the project costs.
The most progressive corporate commitments this week involve nature-based mitigation and pushing sustainability out into their supply chains. Walmart pledged to do some big things, including achieving zero emissions by 2040 without carbon offsets, committing to protect and restore at least 50 million acres of land and one million square miles of ocean by 2030, and promising zero waste in the US, Canada, and Japan by 2025.
Why This Matters: Nature-based solutions have until now been seen as greenwashing. But these new commitments go much farther.
by Natasha Lasky, ODP Contributing Writer A 1000-foot stretch highway in Oroville, CA was recently repaved with recycled plastic and asphalt—the first time a state department has paved a road with 100% recycled materials. This durable recycled material can combat potholes, last two to three times longer than asphalt roads, and reuse about 150,000 single-use […]
Why This Matters: The report is another loudly ringing alarm bell that our current path is unsustainable — and we need to make a huge shift away from “business as usual” across a range of human activities.
Our Daily Planet is your daily dose of the stories shaping our world and the ways that you can take action. From the climate crisis to the protection of biodiversity, if these issues matter to you then please subscribe & stay informed!
Your privacy is Important! We promise never to use your email address to send you spam or advertisements.