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The Climate Pod

May 3, 2023

Over the next 30 years, it’s expected that thirteen million Americans living on the coasts will be forced to leave their homes as a result of rising sea levels, devastating floods, and worsening storms. How those cities prepare for and adapt to a warmer world will determine who will be displaced and what alternatives will be available to them.  If America’s history is an indicator of who will be protected and who won’t, the white, rich neighborhoods will likely be prioritized while the black, brown, and poor communities are sacrificed and their residents left with little relocation assistance.

We can expect this to be the case because this is already happening now in Charleston, South Carolina, a city that played an instrumental role in America’s slave economy and is still shaped today by racist zoning laws that are over a century old.  This week we speak with Susan Crawford, former special assistant for science, technology, and innovation policy for President Obama and the author of the new book “Charleston: Race, Water, and the Coming Storm”. This conversation focuses on the problems and potential solutions facing Charleston, but lessons from Charleston can and should be applied to coastal cities across America and the globe.

Read "Charleston: Race, Water, and the Coming Storm"

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