Engineering Rocks Podcast – Resilience: Beyond Sea Level Rise

May 21, 2021

As we look toward creating resilient communities to support Florida’s growing population, there is a lot of focus on coastal resilience and the impact of sea level rise. However, there is more to building a resilient community than just preparing for sea level rise – environmental, social, and governance issues must be addressed whether coastal or inland, urban or rural.

In the latest Engineering Rocks Podcast, Jones Edmunds’ Senior Vice President Brett Cunningham spoke with resilience experts Jim Fox, Senior Resilience Analyst for NEMAC+FernLeaf, and Liz Perez, President and Founder of Collective Water Resources, LLC. The group discussed the impact of issues ranging from local government bond ratings and affordable housing to the overall hydrologic cycle and how environmental changes in one area impact a community’s overall well-being.

Jim explained hazards, exposure, vulnerability, and risk in the context of resilience and sustainability and how there is much more to it than flooding and sea-level rise when addressing these issues. He said, “We need to take a step back and take an all-hazards view to include things like heat stress, wildfire, water shortage due to drought, just to name a few.”

Liz discussed resilience and sustainability through her viewpoint as a water resources engineer and hydrologist. “When I hear sea level rise and I think about climate change, we’re really only considering one small part of the hydrologic cycle…and really to be effective in addressing this, I think we definitely do need to get beyond sea level rise,” Liz commented. “Part of the issue in addressing this is the scientific complexity…perhaps even more so is the social complexity. I think it’s important for scientific folks like us to talk about it.”

Watch our other Engineering Rocks Podcasts HERE and watch for our next podcast coming soon.

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