We really haven’t heard enough about the catastrophic floods across the US state of Colorado in the mainstream UK media.
At the time of writing this post, 300 remain unaccounted for, 3,000 have been evacuated, 1,500 homes have been destroyed and 17,000 buildings have been damaged. National Guard spokespeople claim this is the largest rescue effort since hurricane Katrina in 2005. The flood zone covers 17 counties of an otherwise semi-arid region. More than 400 miles of state highway and thirty bridges have been destroyed. In Boulder City, home to several friends, over 50cm of rain fell, TWICE the annual rainfall for the area. The rebuild will take an age, and cost a fortune. It will likely be months before the death toll is fully known.
As the frequency and intensity of major events such as the flooding in CO. increases, the cost to our economies will vastly outstrip smart investment in mitigation. High winds and floods are familiar enough to anyone living in N. Ireland. No economy can function if folk can’t get to work and school, and if they can, find there’s no power. This was the case for several days in March this year. We can expect more lost work days and pressure on our under-performing economy for several decades. Change will take time, probably decades given the slow but visible shift to renewable energy and low carbon transport across our region. Solar is a key part of the road-map, not a silver bullet but a clean and affordable part of the solution.
As for the state of Colorado? The citizens of Boulder are getting organised at community level, and tackling Big Energy head-on. After the events of the last week, I’m guessing they’re more determined then ever…
You can read the full story by clicking HERE.