In the Infrastructure Bill, a Recognition: Climate Change Is a Crisis

By District Energy posted 08-08-2021 14:54


New York Times


The bipartisan infrastructure deal struck this week provides new money for climate resilience unmatched in United States history: Tens of billions of dollars to protect against floods, reduce damage from wildfires, develop new sources of drinking water in areas plagued by drought, and even relocate entire communities away from vulnerable places.

But the bill is remarkable for another reason. For the first time, both parties have acknowledged — by their actions, if not their words — that the United States is unprepared for the worsening effects of climate change and requires an enormous and urgent infusion of money and effort to get ready.

“It’s difficult to oppose solutions to crises that your constituents are suffering through,” said Shalini Vajjhala, a former Obama administration official who now advises cities on preparing for climate threats. And as those threats become more frequent and widespread, “the constituency for climate resilience is now everybody.”

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