Record Display for the EPA National Library Catalog

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OLS Field Name OLS Field Data
Main Title Catastrophe in the Making The Engineering of Katrina and the Disasters of Tomorrow / [electronic resource] :
Type EBOOK
Author Freudenburg, William R.
Other Authors
Author Title of a Work
Gramling, Robert.
Laska, Shirley.
Erikson, Kai T.
Publisher Island Press/Center for Resource Economics : Imprint: Island Press,
Year Published 2012
Call Number GE300-350
ISBN 9781610911566
Subjects Environmental sciences. ; Geology. ; Architecture. ; Environmental management. ; Environmental economics.
Internet Access
Description Access URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.5822/978-1-61091-156-6
Collation X, 214p. 33 illus. online resource.
Notes
Due to license restrictions, this resource is available to EPA employees and authorized contractors only
Contents Notes
Prologue. The First Days of Katrina -- 1. A Mighty Storm Hits the Shore -- 2. The Setting -- 3. Slicing Through the Swamps -- 4. The Growth Machine Comes to New Orleans -- 5. A "Helpful Explosion" -- 6. The Collapse of Engineered Systems -- 7. The Loss of Natural Defenses -- 8. Critical for Economic Survival? -- 9. The Axe in the Attic -- 10. The End of an Error? -- Endnotes -- References -- Acknowledgments -- Index. When houses are flattened, towns submerged, and people stranded without electricity or even food, we attribute the suffering to "natural disasters" or "acts of God." But what if they're neither? What if we, as a society, are bringing these catastrophes on ourselves? That's the provocative theory of Catastrophe in the Making, the first book to recognize Hurricane Katrina not as a "perfect storm," but a tragedy of our own making-and one that could become commonplace. The authors, one a longtime New Orleans resident, argue that breached levees and sloppy emergency response are just the most obvious examples of government failure. The true problem is more deeply rooted and insidious, and stretches far beyond the Gulf Coast. Based on the false promise of widespread prosperity, communities across the U.S. have embraced all brands of "economic development" at all costs. In Louisiana, that meant development interests turning wetlands into shipping lanes. By replacing a natural buffer against storm surges with a 75-mile long, obsolete canal that cost hundreds of millions of dollars, they guided the hurricane into the heart of New Orleans and adjacent communities. The authors reveal why, despite their geographic differences, California and Missouri are building-quite literally-toward similar destruction. Too often, the U.S. "growth machine" generates wealth for a few and misery for many. Drawing lessons from the most expensive "natural" disaster in American history, Catastrophe in the Making shows why thoughtless development comes at a price we can ill afford.