Puerto Rico’s transformation from hurricanes Irma and Maria has pivoted toward making the island stronger and more resilient. The island’s long-term recovery envisions enhanced infrastructure and warning systems, as well as communities more capable of withstanding events like the 2017 hurricanes.
With the contribution of the international community and cooperation among countries of the region, the Caribbean has initiated a process of risk informed recovery in various sectors to recover from hurricanes Irma and Maria. However, the unpredictability brought about by climate change remains a concern.
One year after Irma and Maria swept through the Caribbean, calm seems to have returned to the region. The Caribbean can build back stronger by investing in better preparedness, strengthening social safety nets, rebuilding better and stronger infrastructure, creating fiscal buffers for difficult times, and protecting and leveraging ocean and natural resources.
While most American homeonwers have home insurance, many lack flood insurance, which is typically purchased from the U.S. government as a separate policy. Many homeowners also have home-insurance policy limits that are too low to cover the full cost of repairing or rebuilding their properties.
Today, the U.S. Virgin Islands Hurricane Recovery and Resilience Task Force released its initial 280-page report to help guide reconstruction and resiliency efforts in the Territory in the wake of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. The document is currently published for public comment, during which time the community can provide feedback until July 27.
Challenging conventional thinking pays dividends with regards to assessing hurricane risk. Researchers have found that hurricane threat is not just from wind or storm surge: people outside the 100-year floodplain may still be at risk, cyclone observations are critical, flood mitigation matters, and Integrated Kinetic Energy is better for risk assessments.