Taking Chances: The Coast after Hurricane Sandy edited by Dr. Karen O'Neill and Dr. Daniel Van Abs
Jul 19, 2016
Humanity is deeply committed to living along the world’s shores, but a catastrophic storm like Sandy-which took hundreds of lives and caused many billions of dollars in damages-shines a bright light at how costly and vulnerable life on a shoreline can be. Taking Chances offers a wide-ranging exploration of the diverse challenges of Sandy and asks if this massive event will really change how coastal living and development is managed.
Bringing together leading researchers-including biologists, urban planners, utilities experts, and climatologists, among others-Taking Chances illuminates reactions to the dangers revealed by Sandy. Focusing on New Jersey, New York, and other hard-hit areas, the contributors explore whether Hurricane Sandy has indeed transformed our perceptions of coastal hazards, if we have made radically new plans in response to Sandy, and what we think should be done over the long run to improve coastal resilience. Surprisingly, one essay notes that while a large majority of New Jerseyans identified Sandy with climate change and favored carefully assessing the likelihood of damage from future storms before rebuilding the Shore, their political leaders quickly poured millions into reconstruction. Indeed, much here is disquieting. One contributor points out that investors scared off from further investments on the shore are quickly replaced by new investors, sustaining or increasing the overall human exposure to risk. Likewise, a study of the Gowanus Canal area of Brooklyn shows that, even after Sandy swamped the area with toxic flood waters, plans to convert abandoned industrial lots around the canal into high-density condominiums went on undeterred. By contrast, utilities, emergency officials, and others who routinely make long-term plans have changed operations in response to the storm, and provide examples of adaptation in the face of climate change.
Will Sandy be a tipping point in coastal policy debates-or simply dismissed as a once-in-a-century anomaly? This thought-provoking collection of essays in Taking Chances makes an important contribution to this debate.
Author / Editor Bio
KAREN M. O’ NEILL is an associate professor in the department of human ecology at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. She is the author of Rivers by Design: State Power and the Origins of U.S. Flood Control and she co-edited Katrina’s Footprint: Race and Vulnerability in America (Rutgers University Press).
DANIEL J. VAN ABS is an associate professor of practice in the department of human ecology at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. He is the coauthor of Water Infrastructure in New Jersey’s CSO Cities: Elevating the Importance of Upgrading New Jersey’s Urban Water Systems.
Robert B. Gramling, Steven G. Decker, David A. Robinson, Daniel Hess, Brian W. Conley, Adelle Thomas, Ashley Koning, Daniel Redlaswk, Joanna Burger, Larry Niles, Angela Oberg, Julia Flagg, Bonnie McCay, Patricia M. Clay, Lisa L. Colburn, Kenneth A. Gould, Tammy L. Lewis, Mark Hewitt, Briavel Holcomb, Clinton J. Andrews, Mariana Leckner, Melanie McDermott, James K. Mitchell, Karen M. O'Neill, Daniel J. Van Abs, Frank A. Felder, Shankar Chandramowli
News and Features by Date
- Expert: NJ towns should start revamping water infrastructure for the future
- More syringes are washing up on Jersey beaches. It's a problem that starts miles away.
- Americans waste nearly half their food. How can we reduce food waste in New Jersey?
- Ira Wagner's 'Houseraising': Uplift, denial, and Hurricane Sandy
- How Privatizing Water Systems Costs Taxpayers -- & Endangers Them (Heavy.com)
- Conservation could curb future N.J. water demands
- Opinion: NJ's Water Needs Could Decrease, Despite 10.4M Residents by 2040
- Prof. Bill Hallman Appointed to National Advisory Committee Addressing Climate Change Communications
- Emily Hunziker (SEBS '17) participated in the University of Sao Paulo's International Science and Technology Symposium last week.
- Victoria looks at improving emergency communications
- How Hurricane Sandy became steroids for Jersey Shore development
- Congratulations to Dr. Ethan Schoolman for winning The Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) Campus Sustainability Research Award.
- Is the Food in Meal Kit Delivery Services Actually Safe to Eat?
- What to tell people to get them to evacuate before a hurricane hits?
- Opinion: The Time is Now for Drinking Water Utilities to Improve Their Systems
- Opinion: Thinking Smaller for more Effective Flood Protection
- GMOs: finding middle ground on genetically modified organisms
- Racial Discrimination Linked with Worse Mental Health
- Opinion: Is Water Supply a Commodity, a Service, or a Right? by Dr. Daniel Van Abs
- Dr. Tom Rudel Honored for Teaching, Research, Service and Diversity Initiatives
- Lecture and Book Signing by George Marshall, "Are Our Brains Wired to Ignore Climate Change?"
- Cymie Payne
- Congratulations Dr. Bonnie McCay for receiving the American Fisheries Society's 2013 Award of Excellence.
- Dr. Peter Guarnaccia was invited by former Rutgers anthropology graduate student Nia Parson to deliver the George and Mary Foster Distinguished Lecture in Cultural Anthropology at Southern Methodist University.
- Check out our latest edition of the EPIB Trail.
- Dr. Cymie Payne was interviewed by the New York Times regarding the campaign against whale hunting.
- Naa Oyo Kwate Wins Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Young Leader Award
- Just published Dr. Pamela McElwee and Dr. Maria Luz Cruz-Torres' new book, "Gender and Sustainability: Lessons from Asia and Latin America."
- See our EcoPodcasts
- Professors in the News: Dr. Shwom is recognized for her recent research and publications
- Just Published: The EPIB Trail, Volume 4 Issue 7
- President Obama's Deputy Assistant for Energy and Climate Change- A Former EPIB Student
- Professors in the News: Naa Oyo A. Kwate profiled in Rutgers Today