Practical Suggestions for Disaster Preparedness From New Yorkers

Steps you can take right now to prepare for the next big storm.

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A little over a week ago, the NYS 2100 Committee, formed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to recommend a post-Sandy course of action, released its report. As Eric Jaffe noted here at the time, the document drew some criticism for the vague and all-encompassing nature of its recommendations. If you’re looking for more specific solutions to improve resiliency, disaster preparedness, and climate change mitigation in New York City, you can turn instead to a report from ioby, a nonprofit fundraising organization dedicated to environmental issues.

The people at ioby polled a group of more than 380 people immediately after the storm to get their thoughts on how the city could be better prepared for similar events in the future. Participants, who weren’t constrained by the political considerations that a government group faces, included “engineers, architects, energy experts, policymakers, artists, lawyers, business owners, nurses, activists, planners, academics, media and more.” The results were released last week.

So what do the people on the ground in New York’s neighborhoods want to see? They came up with some “big ideas,” including updating the region’s electrical grid; making flood insurance more expensive to discourage building in vulnerable areas; expanding protected wetland areas to create a bigger buffer zone for storm surge; building floating boardwalks along coastlines. (Yes, the oft-discussed oyster reefs are in here, too.)

To keep reading, click here.

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