resilience reporter

resilience starts with information

Let’s seize the opportunity for resilience in storm-hit Mozambique

How A Florida Beach Town Changed How We Live

A cozy town built from scratch in the 1980s ignited a revolution in how we design and build communities. With pedestrian-friendly streets, congenial gathering spots and appealing traditional architecture, Seaside on Florida’s Panhandle  proves we can build new places with the qualities we love about classic neighborhoods—a notion once considered an impossible dream.

Cities and towns coast-to-coast have been inspired by Seaside’s innovations.  New districts teeming with loft buildings and bustling streetlife rise out of vacant urban land from Portland to Eau Claire.  New developments characterized by lively public spaces and neighborly…

 

After Paradise, Living With Fire Means Redefining Resilience

Nevada City

Nevada City, Calif., is a former gold rush town that is populated with old wooden Victorian homes and buildings. To prepare for a wildfire emergency, the town is bringing back sirens as an alert system, a reaction to the Camp Fire. Meredith Rizzo/NPR

Dan Efseaff, the parks and recreation director for the devastated town of Paradise, Calif., looks out over Little Feather River Canyon in Butte County. The Camp Fire raced up this canyon like a blowtorch in a paper funnel on its way to Paradise, incinerating most everything in its path, including scores of homes.

Efseaff is floating an idea that some may think radical: paying people not to rebuild in this slice of canyon: “The whole community needs some defensible space,” he says.

Residents would get expanded green space for recreation and a vital safety buffer to help protect Paradise from future fire calamities. “We would work with either landowners on easements,” he suggests, “or looking at them from a standpoint of some purchases in here.”…

 

Let’s seize the opportunity for resilience in storm-hit Mozambique

Mozambique and the city of Beira do not want to go down in history as the beginning of the end for those who continue to live in hope that action on climate change will soon become evident in a sharp reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe could have been hit by a category 3 storm in March even without global warming. But we’ll never know because as the WMO Statement on the State of the Global Climate in 2018 confirmed, the last four years have been the hottest on record, and to divorce Cyclone Idai from that reality would be extremely foolish.

The same applies to Cyclone Kenneth which struck six weeks later. The twin storms left more than 1,000 people dead, and affected some three million more including hundreds of children who remain separated from their parents and are living with relatives or in temporary shelters.

The one certainty we have come to know in this era of climate change is that unpredictability is all around us when it comes to the weather…

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