Christine Quinn: City must act now before next storm comes

5A disaster-cleanup worker looks for environmentally dangerous waste at a mass 
dump of household possessions in Midland Beach on Staten Island.
John Moore/Getty Images

Hurricane Sandy has thrust climate change back into the spotlight, with City Council Speaker Christine Quinn proposing yesterday that around $20 billion be spent on bolstering New York’s defenses against sea-level rise and flooding.

In order to counter the effects of climate change, the city needs hard infrastructure, which could include sea walls and floodgates, plus restored sand dunes, salt marshes and other natural protectors of coastal areas, Quinn said in a speech.

Her announcement came less than two weeks after Mayor Michael Bloomberg endorsed President Barack Obama for re-election, saying he was the only candidate who saw climate change as an “urgent problem that threatens our planet.”

“This has really catapulted to the top of the city’s agenda,” New York League of Conservation Voters spokesman Dan Hendrick told Metro. “I think there has been, pardon the pun, a real sea change around climate change and adaptation.”

Others agreed that Hurricane Sandy had forced the conversation.

“It’s the silver lining of the tragedy of Sandy,” said Glenn Phillips, executive director of New York City Audubon.

Under Quinn’s proposals, Con Ed would erect structures around at-risk power plants and substations, overhead power lines would be replaced by underground ones and raised buffers would be installed around certain subway grates. Also, the region’s gasoline distribution network would be overhauled, building codes might be changed and sewer system upgrades would be expedited.

Quinn called on the federal government to supply the bulk of the roughly $20 billion necessary for those changes.

Just a day earlier, Gov. Andrew Cuomo likewise asked the federal government for $30 billion to help with recovery efforts related to Hurricane Sandy.

How other low-lying cities prepare for storms

New York City is not the only place trying to stop storm surges. The Netherlands, for example, has spent billions of dollars on dams, dikes, walls, levees and other barriers, whereas London installed steel gates to protect itself from tides moving up the River Thames, according to Quinn. Louisiana, meanwhile, has been refurbishing wetlands and rebuilding small islands since Hurricane Katrina.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.