Catherine Hooper's Blog
Resilient NYC
Friday, 31 October 2014 20:33

Two years after Hurricane Sandy devastated neighborhoods in three NYC boroughs, implementation of resiliency projects to protect the city from future storms is finally underway. There is no single solution. Rather, a group of experts (we’ve mentioned a few in the past) have come up with a hodgepodge of solutions, ranging from a Big U of earthen berms surrounding 8 miles of Manhattan’s southern tip to updating building and zoning codes for at-risk buildings (70K of which sit within the 100-year floodplain).

Second Anniversary of Superstorm Sandy
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 10:30

Today marks the second anniversary of Superstorm Sandy’s landfall in NY and NJ. The storm was responsible for 182 deaths and $65 billion in damage.  Despite massive rebuilding efforts, many towns in the tri-state are still not 100% back to normal. Additionally, many of the resiliency and preparedness plans that were created as a result of the storm have not been implemented.

Friday, 24 October 2014 17:19

Despite a dropping crime rate, many Americans believe - and are afraid of - an increase in crime.  In a NYT editorial, Dr. Christopher Bader of Chapman University discussed a recent study that measured American’s fear.

The study had a few interesting takeaways.  First, many Americans are scared of disasters, but that fear hasn’t translated into preparations such as a home emergency kit.  This suggests that fear is not a great motivator for action.  Also, the study suggested that fear can become a “self-fulfilling prophecy.”  From the piece:

“Sometimes when we’re afraid of something,” said Dr. Bader, “even if our fears are irrational, that can lead us to make choices that will actually cause the thing that we are avoiding...Parks get more dangerous when people are afraid of going to parks because they think they’re dangerous.”

Enterovirus D68
Friday, 17 October 2014 19:05

Ebola may be the virus of the year, but enterovirus D68 has been making headlines as well. There have been seven recent deaths from the virus, including the widely publicized death of a 4-year-old child in NJ.

VICE News interviews Vincent Racaniello, a microbiology professor at Columbia University, and covers all you need to know about enterovirus a non-sensationalized article.

Facebook’s Safety Check
Thursday, 16 October 2014 20:48

Facebook has joined the crowded ranks of post-disaster check-ins with today’s release of Safety Check.  The new feature allows people who are geographically located in areas affected by a disaster to check in with their friends and loved ones, letting everyone know they’re OK.  A similar service is provided by Google Person Finder and the Red Cross’ Safe and Well listings.

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