Hurricane Maria

Following dreadfully closely on the heels of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Jose, Hurricane Maria has now spun into a Category 5 after making landfall on Dominica last night. The storm is currently headed for the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, with [Content Note: video may autoplay at link] "potentially catastrophic" consequences.
Hurricane Maria, once again a Category 5 hurricane, has its sights set on a potentially catastrophic strike on the already storm-weary Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, following a first-on-record Category 5 landfall for the island of Dominica Monday night.

The National Weather Service office in San Juan, Puerto Rico, warned of "catastrophic damage" from Maria's winds, as well as the potential for "devastating to catastrophic flooding" from rainfall flooding in a hurricane local statement issued Tuesday morning.

...Maria will bring a potentially catastrophic combination of storm-surge flooding, destructive winds and flooding rain to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, as a Category 4 or 5 hurricane Wednesday.

"Locations may be uninhabitable for weeks or months," according to the National Weather Service in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
And while various Republicans, notably EPA Chief Scott Pruitt, may insist that this isn't the time to talk about climate change, I don't know what better time there could be than when millions of people are being profoundly affected by climate change.

(For much more on that subject, [CN: audio may autoplay at link] check out Episode 58 of the Hellbent podcast, in which Devon Handy and I discuss at length the politics of climate change and when is the "right time" to talk about it. Spoiler Alert: NOW IS THE RIGHT TIME.)

The jury is not still out on climate change: "Prior to Irma, only four other Category 4 hurricanes had tracked within 75 miles of central Puerto Rico in historical records dating to the late 19th century. Hurricane Hugo in 1989 was the last to do so, before Irma's Category 5 swipe just two weeks ago." And now Puerto Rico will have been battered by two Category 5 hurricanes in as many weeks.

I am scared and deeply sad for the people who have and will be affected by this series of intense hurricanes. I am also angry that we lack compassionate and smart leadership on climate change in the United States.

Please use this thread for info-sharing, updates, checking in, and sharing resources and recommendations on how we can support those affected by the hurricanes and attendant flooding, rebuilding, mold remediation, and other after-effects. As always, let's keep the thread image-free. Thanks.

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