Resilience, climate change awarenessPublished 10:55pm Tuesday, May 6, 2014
To the Editor:
The key to a community surviving our recent storms is resilience, the ability to take a beating and get back up. We have to be resilient in our way of thinking as well as how we build. We can no longer stick our heads in the sand about climate change. It’s real and it’s already destroying homes in Beaufort County. This pattern will continue in the form of unpredictable winters, tornadoes, larger storm surges during hurricanes, and wildfires in the summer.
While many people are taking steps in their own lives to reduce emissions that cause climate change, it’s time to have a community-level conversation. We need to take community-scale steps to both reduce emissions and also to create resilience that will help us weather future storms. We need to protect and restore wetlands and forests that will reduce flooding, but we also need to make sure that every resident has access to safe housing. More importantly, when big projects come up, like building a new jail miles away from the courthouse, or replacing the failing roof on Beaufort County Community College, we need to ask which will make us more resilient. If a project doesn’t help keep our people safe, protect our existing investments and reduce our impact on the environment, we don’t need it.