Laura Lightbody directs The Pew Charitable Trusts’ project aimed at reducing the impact of weather-related catastrophes, such as floods and hurricanes, on the U.S. economy, communities, and environment by reforming federal flood disaster policies. She previously served as a manager for Pew’s clean energy initiative.
Before joining Pew, she was a vice president at McBee Strategic Consulting, where she worked on topics including ocean services and economics, clean energy, and pro-innovation policy. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan with degrees in history and Spanish.
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In 2016, flooding was a factor in 36 federally declared natural disasters that affected 24 geographically diverse states from Pennsylvania to Missouri, Texas to Wisconsin, and Kentucky to Washington. Looking ahead, experts anticipate that the likelihood of flooding in areas already deemed at high risk will increase 45 percent by the end of the century, threatening $66 billion to $160 billion... Read More
In a major step toward better protecting coastlines, estuaries, and lakeshores, the Army Corps of Engineers eased the permitting process, effective today, for living shoreline projects—those that use natural and nature-based defenses against storm damage and erosion. Read More
Floods are becoming more intense in California and are one of its most common disasters. Since 1992, every county in the state has had at least one federally declared flood disaster. As these events become more serious, the physical and economic damage to communities and the threats to human lives and ecosystems also increase. Read More