The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is partnering again with The Rockefeller Foundation to help communities become more resilient in the face of increasingly severe weather from a changing climate. Building upon the successful Rebuild by Design competition, new HUD Secretary Julián Castro and Rockefeller President Dr. Judith Rodin on Wednesday launched a $1 billion National Disaster Resilience Competition. The 67 eligible applicants at the state and local level can now begin applying for funds.
“The National Disaster Resilience Competition is going to help communities that have been devastated by natural disasters build back stronger and better prepared for the future,” said Castro. “This competition will help spur innovation, creatively distribute limited federal resources, and help communities across the country cope with the reality of severe weather that is being made worse by climate change.”
The National Climate Assessment forecasts that extreme weather events will increase as climate change continues unabated. In the past few years, communities across the country have been devastated by heat waves, drought, wildfires, intense storms and flooding. Southern California is currently suffering through record-breaking high temperatures that have reached into the triple digits in some areas. On Tuesday, downtown Los Angeles tied its 1889 record of 103 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the National Weather Service.
Whereas Rebuild by Design specifically focused on the region impacted by Hurricane Sandy, this competition is intended to spur innovation in communities nationwide that have been impacted by natural disasters in recent years. The competition will consider how these communities plan to recover and also how they will avoid future disasters as they become more resilient to the impacts of climate change. HUD defines a resilient community as “able to resist and rapidly recover from disasters or other shocks with minimal outside assistance.”
Image via Shutterstock