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Available Expert - Floods in Kentucky: the underlying factors

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Queen’s expert, Korey Pasch (Political Studies, PhD candidate) is available to speak about the floods that have devastated the U.S. state of Kentucky. Pasch can speak to how reducing vulnerability to flooding means not only addressing the climate crisis, but also addressing underlying socio-economic factors including gender, race, and class.

Severe flooding took place in Kentucky over the weekend, with houses and lives being swept away. As of Monday, the death toll had risen to 37. Kentucky is one of the poorest states in the U.S., which has raised questions about how many people would have been able to flee even if they had wanted to and had advanced warning.

“The tragic Kentucky flooding reinforces that the climate crisis, and the disasters it exacerbates, does not care about political affiliation or ideology. What Kentucky shows us is that we must act to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and limit the impacts of future flooding – but we must also address the underlying socio-economic factors that exacerbate flooding like we’re seeing in Kentucky as well as challenge the special interests who are impeding and blocking progress in this area. Disasters disproportionately affect individuals and communities who are more vulnerable based upon a variety of factors tied to race, gender, and class. The increased vulnerability of individuals and communities exacerbates the impact of catastrophic events like the Kentucky floods and makes recovery more difficult,” says Pasch.

To arrange an interview, please contact Media Relations Officer Victoria Klassen (Victoria.klassen@queensu.ca) at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada.   

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