Blog Posts and Commentaries

  • Aerial photograph of the devastation caused in the greater New Orleans area following Hurricane Katrina, August 30, 2005, photo by Vincent Laforet/Pool/Reuters

    Planning for a COVID-19 Hurricane

    May 4, 2020

    What if Hurricane Katrina had hit during a pandemic? Emergency planners can prepare for this scenario by evaluating current response system capacity, evacuation and sheltering procedures, food and supply issues, and more.

  • A teacher and a student presenting to class, photo by FatCamera/Getty Images

    Elevating Teacher Voices, Along with Their Salaries to Professionalize Teaching in Louisiana

    Sep 18, 2019

    Salary raises have a direct impact on teachers' day-to-day lives. But efforts like those in Louisiana to elevate teachers' voices, and not just their salaries, are more likely to make a real difference for the teaching profession by creating a clear career ladder. The state's efforts could also be cultivating a teaching force that is providing students with the curricula and instruction they need to achieve at higher levels.

  • A boy on a bicycle cools off from the extreme heat from an opened fire hydrant in Brooklyn, New York, July 2, 2018

    Triaging Climate Change

    Jan 23, 2019

    There are many opportunities to manage climate risk around the world, but not everything can be saved. Delaying triage of climate damages could leave societies making ad hoc decisions instead of focusing on protecting the things they value most.

  • Work crews on boats gather to clean marshland impacted by oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill in the Barataria Bay of Louisiana, June 17, 2010.

    Overlapping Environmental Disasters Put a Strain on Gulf Communities

    Nov 29, 2018

    For Gulf Coast residents, dealing with the impact of the Deepwater Horizon disaster is challenging enough. With the Taylor Energy spill, they may face an even more daunting recovery, one that could take decades. Acknowledging the extent and complexity of recovery is the first step toward supporting coastal communities to build their resilience in the face of overlapping disasters.

  • Teacher Darcy McKinnon teaches math to her seventh grade class at Samuel J. Green Charter School in New Orleans, Louisiana, February 22, 2006

    Louisiana's Education System Is Evolving: Here's What Parents Need to Know

    Sep 12, 2018

    Louisiana has taken big steps to improve its education policies and the education of the state's children, from birth to grade 12. Parents can help their children benefit from the reforms by being informed about the changes and knowing how to take advantage of new resources.

  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency Headquarters in Washington, U.S., October 5, 2016

    FEMA's Transformation

    Jun 8, 2018

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency's strategic plan shows several shifts in U.S. disaster relief policy. Redirecting longer-term recovery operations to state and local authorities would allow FEMA to concentrate its assets on the catastrophic disasters it is uniquely designed to handle.

  • The Colorado Aqueduct near the Iron Mountain Pumping Plant in Earp, California, April 16, 2015

    How Federal Policy Could Help Water and Wastewater Utilities

    Jan 16, 2018

    A targeted approach could help the federal government address the root causes of infrastructure problems more effectively than a spending initiative that simply spreads money around with the hope that more spending might do some good.

  • Communities are seen surrounded by water and wetlands in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, August 25, 2015

    Environmental Impact Bonds May Not Bear Fruit for Green Investors

    Nov 26, 2017

    Investors may be willing to accept a lower return for socially responsible investments, but are environmental impact bonds the best way to leverage these opportunities?

  • SFC Eladio Tirado, who is from Puerto Rico, speaks with residents as he helps during recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria, in San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico, October 7, 2017

    How to Rebuild After This Year's Hurricane Season? Invest in Resilience

    Nov 6, 2017

    Investing in resilience in an informed and systematic way can help a wide range of high-risk communities be better prepared for any future disasters.

  • A watercolor painting of a silhouette profile

    Is Suicide Preventable? Insights from Research

    May 8, 2017

    Conventional wisdom about suicide prevention suggests that one just needs to know what warning signs to look for. But that's not the case.