FEMA

Climate Change and the "cycle of disaster" in floodplains

When it comes to rebuilding after storms, some hard decisions need to be made:

Local officials desperate to restore normalcy to disoriented communities will get to decide how to spend those federal dollars — choices made more consequential, and costly, as sea levels rise and Atlantic storms generate greater surge and rainfall because of climate change.

“Human settlements have been designed in a way that reflects a climate of the past, and this increases the likelihood that disaster-related losses will continue to rise,” said Gavin Smith, a professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who directs the Coastal Resilience Center of Excellence, a research consortium funded by the Department of Homeland Security. “This also means we need to rethink how and where we build before the storm, as well as how and where we reconstruct public buildings and infrastructure in the aftermath of extreme events.”

First let me state upfront I do not live in an area prone to flooding, even during the worst of deluges. There are a few streams here and there in my community that are prone to overflow, but 15-20 minutes later everything's fine. And I know it's real easy for somebody like me to criticize those who do live in such areas, who resist being relocated. But emotional attachments have absolutely no influence on the science of hydrology, and if that science tells you you're living in the wrong place, you should probably listen closely:

FEMA "Glitches" May Leave Some in NC Homeless

Based on Raleigh's News & Observer's report, "glitch" is perhaps a word too mild:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. --

Hundreds of Hurricane Katrina refugees face possible eviction because their federal relief checks haven't arrived - four weeks after the money was promised.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency was to send checks of $2,358 to cover three months' housing. But evacuees said FEMA has mailed checks to former addresses in New Orleans or to the wrong address in Charlotte, which never reached their intended recipients.

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