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Audubon Florida
White ibises feeding along a beach.
Audubon Florida Climate and Energy News Roundup
This week we share news about the future of oil drilling in the Everglades, the Southwest Florida Regional Resiliency Compact, recovery in Mexico Beach three years after Hurricane Michael, billion-dollar disasters, and more!   
White Ibises. Photo: John Brennan/Audubon Photography Awards
Oil Drilling Proposal for Everglades May Face Tougher Time with Biden Administration
From Miami Herald

“A Texas company’s plans to drill for oil in the Everglades may have a tougher time winning approval, now that an administration that’s skeptical of fossil fuels has taken over in Washington. Burnett Oil Co. has proposed drilling at two sites in Big Cypress National Preserve, important Florida panther habitat that sprawls across both sides of Alligator Alley. Although oil drilling has taken place there on a modest scale since the 1970s, the potential expansion has generated intense opposition from environmentalists.”
Southwest Florida Leaders Come Together to Prepare Region for Climate Change
From Naples Daily News

“Local leaders and experts in Southwest Florida met for the first time Friday under a compact meant to improve the region’s resiliency against the effects of climate change. Leaders from 15 jurisdictions spanning Charlotte, Collier and Lee counties as well as the Seminole Tribe of Florida agreed to join the Southwest Florida Regional Resiliency Compact. The initial meeting was an organizational process to establish starting points on how the group should work together.”
Hurricane Michael 3 Years Later: Bay County Communities See Growth and Recovery
From Panama City News-Herald

“Three years ago today, Hurricane Michael roared ashore in Bay County with close to 160 mph winds and a storm surge recorded up to 14 feet, devastating every city in the county and much of the eastern Panhandle. Mexico Beach saw four fatalities, damage to 80% of the buildings in the town and extensive damage to its power grid and water systems… In the three years since, the county has made major progress with new buildings, new infrastructure and best of all — a new sense of community. Mexico Beach was committed to restoring the small-town community it has had since the town’s origins in 1950.”
US Hit with 18 Billion-dollar Disasters So Far This Year
From Phys.org
 
“The United States saw an unprecedented 18 separate billion-dollar weather and climate disasters in the first nine months of the year, according to scientists with NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information Not only was September 2021 quite warm, but it also brought with it devastating impacts from four of the 18 disasters: flooding from Hurricane Ida, landfall of Hurricane Nicholas, and ongoing drought and wildfires tormenting communities in the West.”
25% of All Critical Infrastructure in the US is at Risk of Failure Due to Flooding, New Report Finds
From CNN News

“As a massive investment to repair roads and adapt to climate change faces an uncertain fate in Congress, a new report finds much of the country's infrastructure is already at risk of being shut down by flooding. And as the planet heats up, the threat is expected to grow. Today, one-in-four pieces of all critical infrastructure in the US — including police and fire stations, hospitals, airports and wastewater treatment facilities — face substantial risk of being rendered inoperable by flooding, according to a new report released today by the First Street Foundation, a nonprofit research and technology group that assesses the threat posed by flooding across the country. The report also found nearly 2 million miles of road — 23% of US roadways — are already at risk of becoming impassable due to flooding.”
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