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With 'NOLA to New York', Katrina Survivors Give Gotham Some Love

Survivors of Hurricane Katrina express their empathy to their Hurricane Sandy brothers and sisters.


Who can empathize more with New Yorkers dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy than residents of New Orleans who lived through the death and destruction brought by Hurricane Katrina? In order to connect the two communities and give the persevering residents of the Big Easy a way to offer their support to Gotham City, freelance journalist Andy Kopsa has started the heartwarming Tumblr NOLA to New York.

Kopsa lives in New York City but used to call New Orleans home—she's actually in New Orleans right now, waiting to get back to New York City. "So while I am pacing, worried about my husband, friends and my city, I thought up this project," Kopsa writes on the blog's "About" page. "Who better than the people of New Orleans to talk to the people of NYC right now. They know, they lived through Katrina. They are still living with it seven years later," she says. Indeed, a section of the Tumblr features photos of several places in New Orleans that are still not back to normal.

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Getting it Right: Rebuilding Local Economies After a Natural Disaster

While New Orleans was the first American city in a century to suffer a landscape-scale disaster, it will certainly not be the last.

I’ve spent most of the past five years living in New Orleans researching the city’s recovery, and I’ve thought a great deal about what happens to economies in serious disaster situations. They seem simple, but they inevitably spawn maddening numbers of correlates.

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Students Say New Orleans Schools Are No Education "Miracle"

Students from six New Orleans high schools say that when it comes to post-Katrina reform, it's far too soon to declare "mission accomplished".


Last year Education Secretary Arne Duncan infamously quipped that Hurricane Katrina was "the best thing that happened to the education system in New Orleans" because it swept away the city's dysfunctional school system. Indeed, in the six years since the levees broke, the reform efforts in New Orleans schools have been held up nationally as an education "miracle." But according to a report (PDF) released today that surveyed students at six New Orleans high schools, it's far too soon to declare "mission accomplished."

The survey, conducted over 18 months by the city's Vietnamese American Young Leaders Association, collected data from 425 students at six schools, making it the most extensive youth-led, student-centered study since Hurricane Katrina. Through surveys, focus groups and individual interviews, students rated their schools on 12 criteria "that local students identified as integral to a quality education—teaching, student support services, physical environment, textbooks, school food, family inclusion, rigor and college readiness, English as a second language, school fees, access to school options, transportation, and safety and bullying."

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As with Gulf Spill, Mine Disasters, and Katrina, Warnings About Japan's Reactor Went Ignored

For many companies, it's still profit over people when it comes to safety.


As the whole world readies itself for a nuclear catastrophe in Japan, where workers at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are currently trying to prevent a meltdown, news comes that people have known for decades about the dangers of GE's Mark 1 reactor, the reactor at the heart of the Fukushima Daiichi trouble.

As far back as 1972, reports The New York Times, regulators warned that "if the cooling systems ever failed at a Mark 1 nuclear reactor, the primary containment vessel surrounding the reactor would probably burst as the fuel rods inside overheated. Dangerous radiation would spew into the environment." Despite this warning, however, nobody did anything about it, and now millions of people's lives are in jeopardy. Why the hell does this always happen?

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To Haiti, With Love

I met with a high school teacher last night who had just received a text message from one of his students. It read: "I came up with this idea...

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