• April 21, 2023

    Resilience Should Be an Earth Day Priority

    Chuck Chaitovitz

This Earth Day, let’s take a moment to focus on an often overlooked but vitally important topic: resilience.

Did you know: The costs of natural disasters have been increasing, including $360 billion in damage and losses in 2022. These climate impacts require policies and practical solutions to help transform the way in which we prepare ahead of the next crises.

What we’re doing: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has made building smart, modern, resilient infrastructure among our top priorities. This includes:

·       Policy advocacy. Our coalition of stakeholders recently sent our policy priorities to Congress and are beginning advocate for providing a set of commonsense and strategic suggestions that will ensure people and the communities where they live and work can respond effectively to threats posed by a changing climate. 

·       Practical pre-disaster mitigation programmatic implementation. More must be done to engage with federal agencies to follow the implementation of Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities, STORM Act Resilience Revolving Loan Funds, and the Community Disaster Resilience Zones Act and other provisions of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which offers tools to include pre-disaster mitigation as part of infrastructure development. 

·       The economics of resilience. There is a great deal of data suggesting that the benefits to costs for various pre-disaster mitigation approaches are as much as 6 to 1.  More tools are needed to capture this value and make the economic case for resilience and pre-disaster mitigation from the range of hazards, including drought, floods, heat, and wildfires. The U.S. Chamber will engage on this issue and highlight the role that insurance might play as risks are reduced.

·       COP 28. Resilience and adaptation were a major topic during recent international climate negotiations, especially as it relates to the ongoing loss and damage discussion. We will continue to raise the inclusion of pre-disaster mitigation as a consideration as countries roll out the potential for loss and damage funding.

We look forward to growing our coalition to bring resilience issues to the forefront. 

Happy Earth Day!