Some news from the US market;
The Center for NYC Neighborhoods (CNYCN), in partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Climate & Environmental Justice (MOCEJ), the Environmental Defense Fund, and SBP, has launched a new pilot project to support low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities in high-flood-risk neighborhoods with emergency cash funds after a major flood. The ”learning pilot” further establishes CNYCN and MOCEJ as national leaders in flood reform and innovation, committed to ensuring equitable access to financial resources that ease post-flood recovery and build financial resilience.
The project is being led by Principal Investigator Carolyn Kousky, associate vice president for economics and policy at Environmental Defense Fund, and CNYCN. In addition to the core partner institutions, the program includes advisory support from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Climate & Environmental Justice (MOCEJ) and SBP, a social impact organization, as well as technical assistance from Guy Carpenter, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions, and ICEYE. The project is funded by the Civic Innovation Challenge, with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Homeland Security.
CNYCN purchased a parametric product to finance emergency grants to households in need of assistance in the aftermath of a flood. Parametric solutions settle the claim based on the intensity of the event itself, instead of the underlying financial loss caused by the event. Through this pilot, payouts will be made for qualifying flood events — using a mix of satellite data, on-the-ground real-time sensors, and social media images, compiled by ICEYE, a provider of natural catastrophe data and the technology partner for the program. Through these observations, the extent can be determined within days and the funds released near-immediately to help the most affected communities with urgent post-disaster needs.
LOW INCOME SUPPORT
Those who qualify can receive a grant up to $15,000 from CNYCN in the aftermath of a major flood. The application portal will open once a qualified weather event triggers the policy. Households can apply on their own or through the help of CNYCN’s network partners. If a flood occurs, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions and technology partner, ICEYE, will determine the percentage of each insured neighborhood that falls within the flooded area, and Swiss Re Corporate Solutions will issue a payment to the CNYCN to then distribute to individual households.
“Extreme flooding and natural disasters often impact traditionally marginalized communities the most, as they have little to no savings and are often denied post-disaster loans, while federal funding is typically insufficient or extremely delayed,” said Christie Peale, CEO and Executive Director of the Center for NYC Neighborhoods. “This innovative program will stimulate real change in providing immediate access to funds that help build towards recovery.”
“This innovative product allows New York City to optimize its resources and focus on helping low and moderate income communities to recover more quickly after a severe flooding event,” said Jackie Higgins, Head Public Sector Solutions North America, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions.
“This historic program will bring critical financial support to low-income households and help the City respond decisively to flood events,” says Andy Read, Global Head of Government Solutions at ICEYE. “This partnership represents a cornerstone step in the right direction as we seek to address a growing flood protection gap.”