Opinion: We can’t pedal our way out of the climate crisis

On September 1st, three days after Hurricane Ida’s deadly landfall in Louisiana, what was widely billed as the storm’s “remnants” swept through the New York City metro area, submerging massive portions of its roads and transit system in floodwater and leaving at least 52 dead in stranded cars and illegal basement apartments. This event did not reveal anything about the city’s aging, ill-maintained infrastructure, per se. Rather, it simply underscored—and not for the first time—how wholly unequipped the system is to deal with climate change, the escalating consequences of which overwhelmingly burden the poor.

The response from the planning and design community was predictable,

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