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We Gathered Experts to Map BC’s Disaster Future

Watch this video discussion of how to empower communities in the era of climate crisis.

Francesca Fionda 3 Jul 2023The Tyee

Francesca Fionda is an investigative reporter and regular contributor at The Tyee. Find her on Twitter @FrancescaFionda.

Friday marked two years since a wildfire almost completely levelled the village of Lytton in southern British Columbia. There was no warning. Hundreds of people are still displaced. Residents are waiting to rebuild.

How best to prevent, survive and recover from climate-related calamities? That is the focus of The Tyee’s multi-part series Bracing for Disasters — including a webinar The Tyee hosted with SFU Public Square on June 20. Hundreds attended the online event which was recorded.

Now you can watch “Empowering Communities to Endure Climate Disasters” on YouTube.

“Extreme weather events are here. They're not in the future,” said Lytton wildfire survivor Michele Feist during that conversation. She was joined by chair of the Emergency Planning Secretariat, Stó:lō tribal council president and tribal Chief Tyrone McNeil, emergency and disaster manager Tarina Colledge, and Paradise, California wildfire survivor and community advocate Susan Dobra. (Learn more about all involved at the event page.)

Our panel members explored questions including: How are communities navigating life after disaster? What are the lessons from survivors? How can we face growing catastrophic disasters? And they shared action items for individuals, communities and governments while highlighting the desperate need for wider-systemic level change.

Over the past several months The Tyee, in partnership with the Climate Disaster Project, has interviewed over a dozen British Columbians displaced by extreme weather-related catastrophes, frontline workers and experts, and analyzed data to understand the scale of the threat in this province and whether its government is up to the task.

The resulting Bracing for Disasters series was made possible with funding by the inaugural Lieutenant Governor’s BC Journalism Fellowship. The Tyee retained complete editorial control of the series.  [Tyee]

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