News

Co-PI Orlove Connects Urban Planning and Glacial Flooding

Professor Benjamin Orlove, Columbia University
August 25, 2016
SRN Co-PI, Benjamin Orlove, Columbia University,  was a keynote speaker at the International Glacier and Mountain Ecosystems Forum, held 10-12 August in Huaraz, Ancash region, Peru. The event was hosted by a newly formed organization, the National Research Institute on Glaciers and Mountain Ecosystems, whose goals are to promote research and action on these climate change issues.

Professor Orlove’s SRN research and the goals of this group overlap on the topic of urban planning. “Peru is highly unusual in that, in mountain regions, though the towns have higher income and access to government services than the rural areas, the towns are also more vulnerable to glacier lake outburst floods. The towns are concentrated along major rivers. The rural agricultural people live more scattered on hillsides. so there are the issues of promoting early warning systems, despite people’s unwillingness to evacuate even when warnings are issued. They fear that thieves will come to evacuated areas. Weak planning/enforcement leads to rebuilding in flood zones, which are close to transport routes, despite risks,” says Orlove.

Learn more at ABC News.