Rockefeller Partnership to Support Cities' Infrastructure Recovery

The Rockefeller Foundation, Veolia, and Swiss Re Corporate Solutions have announced an infrastructure recovery initiative designed to accelerate the economic recovery of cities in the aftermath of catastrophic natural disasters.

Announced at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the partnership will support cities around the globe in the areas of climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction, and infrastructure enhancement and recovery. Reinsurance company Swiss Re and resource management firm Veolia will work with cities around the globe to assess the risk exposure of critical assets under current and future climate scenarios and develop resilience plans to minimize that risk over time. The partnership was brokered by 100 Resilient Cities, a Rockefeller Foundation-funded initiative aimed at helping cities better understand the disaster-related threats to their critical infrastructure; providing resources needed to better protect that infrastructure; and restoring those assets to functionality after a disaster. To that end, the two firms will develop a pilot for the initiative in a participating 100RC city like New Orleans, where critical water and wastewater systems are at growing risk from climate change-related events.

"This partnership is a sign that the private sector better understands what cities need to build resilience, and cities will no longer have to make difficult and often inefficient decisions after experiencing a disaster," said 100 Resilient Cities president Michael Berkowitz. "They will know what is at risk, how it needs to improve, who will fix it, and where the funds will come from, all of which allows them to rebound more quickly. Hopefully, this is the just the beginning, and when other market leaders recognize the importance of what Swiss Re and Veolia are doing, they too will begin to really innovate."