NYC Needs New Stat To Warn Residents Of Deadly Storms

Date: 2021-09-16 04:14:24

“Unlike heat and cold, there are no clear standards in New York for triggering a rain emergency, and there are no clear steps to ensure the most vulnerable are warned and protected.”

Adi Talwar

Williamsbridge Oval Park on the morning of Sept. 2 after a night of record-breaking rainfall in New York City caused by the remnants of Hurricane Ida.

Climate change is no longer an imminent threat. It’s here, and on September 1st it killed sixteen New Yorkers. But when the remnants of Hurricane Ida swept over New York City, many were surprised — including the city government itself.

But the surprise is not surprising. The whole world is waking up to climate change, disaster for weather conditions. We’ve never experienced anything like this. But there are no more excuses; we have to act, lives depend on it. And it is no longer enough to plan for climate change in the long term. Now we have to assume that the next extreme event is just around the corner and that we have systems in place to protect people.

In New York, we learned to plan for storm surges, heat, cold, and snow, but no rain. And now we need to take serious steps to fundamentally rebuild our city’s infrastructure to withstand extreme rainfall of a few hours, as well as immediate changes to our contingency planning.

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