Tens of Thousands in LA and TX Devastated — Battling COVID In Record Heat Without Power or Water click button

Tens of Thousands in LA and TX Devastated — Battling COVID In Record Heat Without Power or Water

The COVID pandemic makes much more challenging all the issues surrounding the evacuation, response, and rebuilding of the areas of Louisiana and Texas hit hard by Hurricane Laura.  As National Public Radio explains, many families are now essentially homeless because their houses were ruined by the storm and they lack running water and electricity.

Why This Matters:  67,000 people have already registered for Federal disaster assistance but it will not get better any time soon for those hit hardest by the storm.

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COVID Pandemic Stalls NYC Resilience Funding Bill — Minorities Stand to Lose The Most

COVID Pandemic Stalls NYC Resilience Funding Bill — Minorities Stand to Lose The Most

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 city officials, 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.  

Why This Matters:  Advocates argue that this delay in climate adaptation funding will hurt New York City’s low-income communities of color, which already bear a disproportionate burden of climate impacts.

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How Do You Solve A Problem Like Laura? Houston and the USG Say the “Ike Dike” click button

How Do You Solve A Problem Like Laura? Houston and the USG Say the “Ike Dike”

Twelve years after Hurricane Ike tore up the Texas coastline around Galveston, and three years after Hurricane Harvey stalled over Houston and filled the city with floodwater, the federal government and the state have a proposal to deal with future hurricanes — but it will cost $32b and is still in the planning phase

Why This Matters:  There may be a cheaper and more effective solution than the Ike Dike, which is to build a series of barrier islands using the silt dredged out of Houston Harbor.

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Hurricane Laura Barreling Toward the Texas/Louisiana Coast

Hurricane Laura Barreling Toward the Texas/Louisiana Coast

Hurricane Laura is expected to make landfall very late tonight or very early tomorrow as a monstrous Category 4 hurricane that will cause major damage due to both high winds and storm surge.  Twenty million people are in the storm’s path and more than 500,000 people have been told to evacuate low lying areas even as the COVID pandemic makes it difficult to house them safely in crowded temporary group shelters.

Why This Matters:  A category 4 storm is bad enough, but to have to deal with evacuating half a million people, many of them poor, during a pandemic is beyond challenging.

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Tropical Storm Isaias Crawling Up the East Coast, Could Make Landfall In the Carolinas Overnight

Tropical Storm Isaias Crawling Up the East Coast, Could Make Landfall In the Carolinas Overnight

Tropical Storm Isaias is slowly moving up the Eastern seaboard today, with its biggest risk for damage now in the Carolinas, as the storm remained offshore of Florida causing flooding due to storm surge rather than wind damage.  It will be a very wet few days for the East Coast with heavy rains and storm surge, and inland flooding all the way up to New England.

Why This Matters:  A new study out last week found what we are seeing play out with Tropical Storm Isaias.

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Feds Propose to Spend Billions to Build Walls To Shore Up Miami From Sea Level Rise

Feds Propose to Spend Billions to Build Walls To Shore Up Miami From Sea Level Rise

Just as Tropical Storm Cristobal prepared to make landfall in Louisiana, the Army Corps of Engineers (COE) released a plan on Saturday to spend nearly $5B to build miles of sea walls around parts of Miami that are vulnerable to storm surge and sea-level rise, local media there reported.

Why This Matters:  Similar studies by the Army Corps are going on all over the country — New York City, Norfolk, Virginia, and in the Florida Keys.  The feds abruptly pulled in February the COE’s plans for a sea wall for New York City without comment.

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