Denise and Steve are two retired professionals who are very involved in climate work. They were wonderful hosts. Over a delicious breakfast in their home, we got to talking about local climate-related impacts in their community. At the talk the night before, we heard mentions of increased flooding in the area. Well, this morning Steve and Denise elaborated. In the past 10 years, the area has experienced extreme rainfall which has led to 100-year flooding events.
Steve and Denise told us about the homes in their community that have been swept away as the river has flooded. Steve’s medical practice, which he built high above the flood plain, was ruined several times over just 10 years by flooding. As an MD, a lot of important equipment and paperwork was ruined. Over breakfast, Denise offered to take us on a tour of the town to show us the areas that have been hit by flooding. We saw one empty lot where a home was lost to erosion, and another home which has a river increasingly encroaching on the property. In one rain event, the home owners left the doors open as the the river flowed right through the living room! When you look at the river, it looks like a small creek. But it has become increasingly ferocious during rain events. Check out one of our film clips from the morning tour below!
We got a lot of great footage thanks to a tour by Denise. After this, we had a long drive as we approached our last few days of driving until the east coast. We drove for about 6 hours, and spent the night somewhere off the highway. Last night in Lakewood, Ohio, marked our last scheduled climate talk before reaching the east coast. It was a celebration to have completed our northern leg of climate talks!
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Athina Simolaris, M.A.