Robert Pirani and Laura Tolkoff, writing for the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, have published "Lessons from Sandy." Highlights of this meaty document include:
- their definition of resilience: "the capacity to recover quickly from shocks and stressors while at the same time reducing future risk."
As they put it, “Resilience” emerged as a buzzword after Hurricane Sandy, but it has existed in many disciplines to describe a system’s capacity to recover from adversity. In the urban context, resilience is a community’s ability to rebound quickly from shocks and stressors while at the same time reducing future risk (Rodin and Garris 2012). Implicit in this definition is the focus on iterative learning, adapting in the face of adversity, and risk reduction. By incorporating resilience as a goal for planning, investment, and operations, metropolitan areas can become less vulnerable over time. Importantly, resilience is about managing known risks but also about preparing for the unpredictable. Consequently, resilience requires solutions that are robust across many future conditions, with multiple lines of defense, and with opportunities to learn as uncertainties become known."
-a holistic view of resilience, which meshes together disaster relief, insurance and flood risks, infrastructure and science.
-recommendations for federal actions (which begin on page 34). This is particularly relevant to those of us who are involved with the President's Adaptation Task Force right now.
You can view the document here and a link will be in the library going forward.
Congress passed the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act in 2012 (BW12) in order to modernize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), with new maps, new community outreach efforts, and flood insurance rates that reflected risk more accurately.
However, changes to BW12 are on the horizon.
First, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014 prohibits FEMA from implementing Section 207 of BW12 until 2016 or later. This means that some properties will not have their insurance rates adjusted after new flood maps come out. Properties that have already had an insurance rate change will keep their new insurance rate. [More information is available from STARR].
And on March 4th, 2014, the House passed the Home Owner Insurance Affordability Act. The Senate also passed an act revising BW12 in January, so it looks like something is likely to pass both arms of Congress soon. Among other changes, the Act would "provide retroactive refunds for people who have had large flood insurance rate increases due to the sale or purchase of a home, cap average annual premium increases at 15 to 18 percent and allow subsidies for insurance rates that are based on current flood maps" (Insurance Journal).
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