Sep 5, 2021 - Politics & Policy

FEMA administrator calls climate change "the crisis of our generation"

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Deanne Criswell told "Fox News Sunday" that the impacts of climate change are “the crisis of our generation."

Why it matters: Criswell's comments come after Hurricane Ida devastated much of the Northeast, causing more than 50 deaths across five states.

What she's saying: "This is the crisis of our generation, these impacts that we're seeing from climate change, and we have to act now to try to protect against the future risks that we're going to face," Criswell told host Chris Wallace.

  • "We saw intense weather events in 2017. Last year was a record number of hurricanes and a record wildfire season," she added. "The UN had just put out their climate report and they said that this is the climate crisis that we're facing and it's only going to continue to get worse."

“This storm, in particular, it intensified so rapidly in the Atlantic or in the Gulf, that emergency managers, emergency responders had even a shorter time to warn the public and help get them out of harm's way,” Criswell said when asked why projections did not accurately predict the storm's severity.

  • “We're also seeing, as this storm and some of the other weather events that we've seen, they're just intensifying very rapidly and dropping a large amount of rain and tornadoes," Criswell said.

Worth noting: "These once-in-a-century storms are starting to come almost every other year," Cedric Richmond, a White House senior adviser, said on ABC's "This Week" as he called for Congress to approve the White House's infrastructure legislation and $3.5 trillion spending bill.

  • "They're bigger, stronger. They wreak more havoc," he continued.
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