America’s Deadly Heat Isn’t (Officially) a Major Disaster

There has been a drastic increase of heat-related mortality in the US over the last 30 years. This disproportionately exposes poorer, nonwhite people, and the elderly. The emergence of extreme heat as a climate hazard shows the need for more nuanced cost-benefit metrics, social vulnerability analyses, and federal guidelines to ensure disaster response and preparedness funds are available to local jurisdictions.

New U.S. Strategy Would Quickly Free Billions in Climate Funds

The Federal Emergency Management Agency aims to free up as much as $10 billion to build climate resiliency through existing grant programs through a budgeting maneuver which would count federal COVID spending towards a formula that allocates money towards climate programs, according to an article in the New York Times.

U.S. Disaster Costs Doubled in 2020, Reflecting Costs of Climate Change

A recent article in the New York Times reported that disaster costs from hurricanes, wildfires, and other disasters in the U.S. were $95 billion in 2020, more than double the previous year's costs. These disasters, which reflect the growing impacts of climate change, include California's largest-ever wildfires and a record number of Atlantic storms, including Hurricane Laura.