Photo: Mr.TinDC/Flickr

Being a resilient region means planning ahead.

Greater Washington must be prepared to bounce back from all types of threats, from sudden public safety events (e.g. terrorism) to prolonged stressors that can weaken the fabric of the day-to-day operations (e.g. neglected infrastructure). A resilient region must plan ahead to mitigate risks and maintain balance for residents, businesses, and government. Building resilience is increasingly important as the region becomes more densely populated.

The following issues have an especially large impact on the resiliency of Greater Washington:

  • Floods: Climate change is causing rising seas and more extreme weather, which increase the likelihood of flooding in the D.C. area. Severe flooding can block roadways and cause significant property damage.
  • Outdated electrical grid: The way our electricity grid is currently configured makes big portions of the city vulnerable to blackouts.
  • Public safety threats: The nation’s capital is a natural target for terrorism and other acts of violence. 100 Resilient Cities claims that the D.C. region could lose up to $100 billion in private sector profits and 1.2 million jobs in the 3 years following a large terrorist attack.

The Washington region can benefit from the 100 Resilient Cities Program and the first-ever chief resilience officer position in the District of Columbia. The Board of Trade will work with partners as well as elected and appointed officials to ensure that we are taking a pragmatic, long-term view of the region’s needs.

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