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Issue #5: UPROOTED: Climate Change & Displacement



October 6 · Issue #5 · View online

Dedicated to curating tech products and startups solving the world's most pressing problems, including climate change, pollution, and sustainability.

Hi guys, 
This week’s newsletter focuses on the topic of displacement; our climate is changing at a rate that keeps exceeding most scientific forecasts. Unfortunately, some families and communities are already suffering from disasters, consequences of climate change, and are being forced to leave everything behind in hopes of survival and in search of a new beginning. 
How can we use tech to protect populations displaced by climate change, and how can it help us increase the resilience of those who are most vulnerable? 

There’s no place like home - literally
Climate change is already forcing people from their land and homes, and putting many more at risk of displacement in the future. Worldwide, the UN Refugee Agency estimates that since 2009, an average of 26 million people are being displaced due to climate- or weather-related disasters! 
Supercharged storms, more intense droughts, rising seas and other impacts of climate change all magnify existing vulnerabilities and the likelihood of displacement – disproportionately affecting low-income countries, women, children and Indigenous peoples.
The land of the free and the home of the … displaced?
Disaster experts estimate that climate and weather events have displaced more than 1 million Americans from their homes in 2017. From Florida to New York coastal cities are at greater risk of flooding and displacement. In Louisiana, a football field worth of wetlands vanishes every 100 minutes, according to the United States Geological Survey; it’s one of the highest rates on the planet, accounting for 90 percent of such losses in the continental United States. 
Displacement in the US will come at a high price, take for example, the community of Isle de Jean Charles, just a small piece of land located in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana. Funded by a $48.3 million dollar grant, the U.S. Housing and Urban Development has begun planning the logistics of resettling all the residents of the community due to rising sea-levels. Furthermore, in the past year, America has experienced a cost of $16 billion in weather and climate related disasters. Researchers have also projected how much economic damage each US county will incur by the end of the century. 
The re-birth of a nation 
The United States, a relatively new country compared to it’s European neighbors, is known for its resilience and in the face of looming disaster, Americans are rising to the challenge. From organizations, to coalitions, to startups, and even resistance from within the White House - all focused on curbing climate change and building strategies and tools to reduce uncertainty and risk as the population adapts to the economic and societal impacts of a changing climate
Here is a list of startups that are betting on the future of disaster relief: 
Jupiter: A startup based in Silicon Valley, is working on combining data and predictive modeling using cloud-based supercomputers to show businesses the potential impacts of climate change.
Collider: A nonprofit innovation center focused on catalyzing market-driven climate solutions.
NORI: A transparent and secure platform that allows both businesses and individuals to take direct action in removing excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
LACI: Los Angeles based cleantech business incubator to accelerate development of cleantech start-ups by offering flexible office space, CEO coaching and mentoring, and access to a growing network of experts and capital.
Around the world 
Techfugees is a global community, with around 18,000 techies, startups, NGOs, impact advisors and entrepreneurs that help coordinate responses to refugee needs. They work under five focus areas: infrastructure, focused on providing internet access, including used phones via Geecycleeducation, with its vast number of tools and apps, identity issues, including Microsoft and Accenture’s global ID system for refugees and extending to the recognition of diplomas, certificates, etc, health, ranging from UCLA’s LUCAS performing basic diagnostic testing from a camera phone to mental health applications such as Karim and Crisis Info Hub, and inclusion, focused on livelihoods and integration. 
The importance of mobile for refugees
Connectivity in times of disaster is crucial. For climate refugees, access to reliable and sustainable mobile connectivity is crucial as it enables a range of mobile services—education, financial, information, and others—that can improve the livelihoods of refugees over the long term. 
Major world organizations like UNICEF have developed mobile applications such as UNICEF’s RapidFTR or Refunite that helps families reconnect during disasters. 
Skilled migration as an alternative
A tweet to retweet
The 2018 Laudato si' Challenge
Climate Change is a Main Cause of the World's Refugee Crisis
Sasja Beslik
Bottled water is up to 10,000 times more expensive than tap water… #bottledwater #sustainability
Wrapping up... We'd love to get your feedback!
Your feedback means a lot to us. 💚 Are there any specific topics you’d like us to cover in the next issues? Let us know at: 🌎
Till next week,
Aleksandra, Andrea, and Jessica. 💚
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