6 years later, Sandy a story of resilience

Ghana must move from coping with floods, to adapting for them

Ghana has a serious flood problem. Over about 50 years, 4 million people have been affected by floods, resulting in economic damage exceeding USD$780 million. At least one major flood disaster has occurred every year over the past 10 years.

Floods are not uncommon in West Africa. Rainfall variability and land use changes have made them increasingly common throughout the region.

In Ghana’s urban areas, like Accra and Kumasi, floods are mostly triggered by seasonal rainfall combined with poor drainage, the dumping of waste into waterways and the low elevation of settlements. In northern Ghana, some floods are caused by spillage from a dam in Burkina Faso.

The floods expose communities to health risks, food shortages and mental stress.

The problem is Ghana’s government currently reacts to the floods using coping strategies. These don’t deal with the underlying risks, are expensive and don’t consider that floods will get worse. The government must take steps towards more proactive flood risk…


6 years later, Sandy a story of resilience

Source: Associated Press A statue of the Virgin Mary stood through the face of Superstorm Sandy.

A community where residents rallied with surfboards and kayaks to rescue neighbors from flood and fire. A survival story in a suburban garage. A religious statue that stood firm while its surroundings were leveled.  Superstorm Sandy roared into the nation’s most populous metropolitan area six years ago today. When it was all over, the meteorological monster created by a former hurricane merging with other weather systems had left at least 182 people dead from the Caribbean to the Northeast and a trail of tens of billions of dollars in damage.  It also left stories and images of resilience, resolve and humanity.  The Associated Press revisited some of those stories and explored the new chapters added since the storm.  No help coming

Disaster struck in the dark of night in Belle Harbor, and residents knew they couldn’t wait for aid.  Superstorm Sandy’s surge swamped the community, which sits on New York City’s narrow Rockaway peninsula, and an electrical fire broke out and spread to over a dozen homes. There was no way for firetrucks to get to the area, where many people hadn’t heeded evacuation orders.  So Belle Harbor residents set out to rescue one another….

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