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Climate Change and the Future of Boston

Climate Change and the Future of Boston

Current price: $110.00
Publication Date: December 31st, 2024
Anthem Press


Like many of the world's iconic coastal cities, Boston faces potentially severe impacts from climate change. Depending on global emissions, Boston could face several feet of sea level rise this century, which would leave many parts of the city subject to tidal and storm flooding. Precipitation events could become more frequent and extreme, and its already-humid summers could become dangerously hot, with most days over 90 degrees. Today, Boston is a booming city with a growing population, a glittering new waterfront neighborhood, world-class universities and a strong economy. Its future risks and opportunities related to climate change are shaped by the 400-year environmental, social and economic history of the city's development. As part of Anthem's series, Climate Change and the Future of the North American City, Future Boston describes how Boston's history and current context shape future climate impacts and examines the mitigation and adaptation strategies the city has taken. Boston is a leader in acknowledging the problem of climate change; it has set a goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2050, among other climate-related goals. It has also developed science-based climate models and undertaken a robust planning process to identify strategies to protect its waterfront from flooding and increase its resilience to other climate-related impacts. Its mayor has embraced a progressive Green New Deal for Boston emphasizing the need for an inclusive and equitable approach to climate mitigation and adaptation. But the city also faces structural challenges, such as aging infrastructure, historic racial inequities, rising gentrification and income inequality and ongoing political and regulatory obstacles that hinder efforts to adapt in an efficient and just manner. The book concludes with a set of forward-looking scenarios about what the future may have in store for the city and the lessons it holds for other coastal cities struggling with these challenges.

About the Author

Courtney Humphries is an interdisciplinary researcher and award-winning journalist writing about science and the urban environment. She is a visiting assistant professor in environmental studies and core fellow at Boston College.