Fellow, Climate Assessment for the Southwest
Hannah Friedrich is a PhD Student in the School of Geography, Development and Environment. She earned her Master’s in Geography from Oregon State University and Bachelor’s degrees in Geography and GIS/Cartography from the University of Wisconsin- Madison. With a background in remote sensing, her dissertation explores how to align satellite- based indicators of post-hurricane recovery with interview and survey data on household finance to identify limitations households encounter in adapting to changing climate risks. Hannah’s longer-term research agenda is to work alongside disaster-impacted communities to translate inequities documented with satellite imagery to policymakers and advocate for more just climate adaptation.
Project Title: Pairing satellite-based maps of blue tarps with community data and stories to support just disaster recovery
Abstract: In the fall of 2020, Calcasieu Parish, in coastal southwest Louisiana, was struck by two category 4 hurricanes that damaged a significant portion of housing across the Parish. Blue tarps were installed on the roofs of damaged homes and buildings to prevent further damage until repairs could be made. Many tarps remain on roofs today. Due to a lack of household-level data, post-disaster recovery trends are challenging to track but critical for identifying differential recovery progress across socioeconomic groups. This project uses satellite imagery to document the geographic and temporal patterns of blue tarp installation on homes and the potential removal of tarps, signaling recovery. To contextualize what the removal of tarps means for households and their recovery experience, listening sessions and neighborhood “go-about” interviews will be conducted with residents in Calcasieu Parish to identify factors that enable and prohibit household-level recovery. This project is undertaken in collaboration with the Disaster Justice Network, a volunteer organization that helps communities across southern Louisiana recover by providing resources on resilient rebuilding techniques. The Disaster Justice Network identified the need to characterize the current state of physical recovery to best position resilient rebuilding efforts to have the greatest impact in preparation for future storm events. This project aims to address this knowledge gap of where damaged or yet-to-recover homes are concentrated, and project findings will be used by the Disaster Justice Network to support applications for funding related to resilient rebuilding and environmental justice.