Also: California’s new clean-energy commitment, and how local food tests political candidates.

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What We’re Following

Buckets of rain: Hurricane Florence is shaping up to be a triple threat for the eastern Carolinas. Storm surges, high winds, and possibly 25 inches of rainfall prompted evacuation orders along the coast, with North Carolina expected to bear the brunt. The state’s poor, rural communities are even more vulnerable in the face of this potentially catastrophic storm.

A map shows poverty rates in North Carolina counties.
North Carolina’s eastern third is also its most impoverished. (Data: Census. Map: David Montgomery/CityLab)

Small towns may face some of the worst damage due to a lack of resources and insufficient communications infrastructure, especially in low-lying coastal areas. As CityLab’s Laura Bliss reports, the real measure of resilience will come as environmental and economic impacts linger after the storm. As one climate researcher tells Laura:

The true test of our disaster response doesn’t just lie in how quickly the lights come back on or flights are restored in major economic hubs, but in how well isolated or marginalized communities fare in the aftermath of storms.

Read: As Hurricane Florence Approaches, Rural Communities Brace for Impact

Andrew Small


More on CityLab

Don’t Overlook Equity Issues in City Climate-Action Plans

Cities that fail to make issues of equity and empowerment central to climate-action initiatives are not living up to the values of the movement, says a former mayor of Portland, Oregon.

Sam Adams

California Commits to 100% Clean Energy by 2045

The bill signed by Governor Jerry Brown makes California the second state, after Hawaii, to make the pledge.

Lydia O'Connor

Why Cynthia Nixon Can't Have the Bagel She Wants

The unspoken rules of local food are a recurring nightmare for politicians.

Sarah Holder

France’s High-Speed Rail Expansion Takes a New Direction

A major new investment makes clear: It’s not all about Paris anymore.

Feargus O'Sullivan

Driving for Uber When You Can’t Afford a Car

In South Africa, extreme inequality means that drivers have a much more difficult time turning a profit with the ride-share service.

Kimon de Greef


What We’re Reading

Subway policing in New York City still has a race problem (The Marshall Project)

The house that came in the mail (99 Percent Invisible)

Single-family homes cover almost half of Los Angeles—here’s how that happened (Curbed Los Angeles)

Waze is using beacons to help drivers navigate GPS dead zones in Chicago (Wired)

The epicenter of the housing bust is booming again. That’s a warning sign. (New York Times)


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