Sustainable Recovery

New FEMA Policy Takes Holistic View to Sustainability and Resilience BY RYAN COLKER In 2023, the U.S. experienced a record 28 disasters causing over $1 billion in damages, far eclipsing the prior record of 22 in 2020. Many of these disasters are driven by climate change. Communities that are impacted by these disasters often experience a long road to recovery…

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FEMA: Big data proves robust code standards’ returns on investment

The Federal Emergency Management Agency examines the benefits of constructing at a higher building code standard for natural disasters such as winds, floods and seismic activity in a new report, “Building Codes Save: A Nationwide Study.” The agency finds that 18.1 million buildings constructed at a higher code standard could save the United States about $1.6 billion annually.

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Built to Last


by sean O’keefe

Construction that stands the test of time is a combination of the right products, preparation, and installation; finding the exact sequence of each is often driven by the building site’s particular challenges. Such was the case for the Town of Jean Lafitte, La., in September 2008 when Hurricane Ike destroyed the town auditorium while flooding thousands of homes and businesses in Jefferson Parrish. The auditorium’s central location adjacent to Lafitte Library, plus elementary and middle schools, was critical to its success as a community landmark. The town was determined to rebuild in place, and resolving site flood plain issues was an obvious concern.

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