InsideClimate News -- Thanks to climate change, extreme weather disasters have hammered the United States with increasing frequency in recent years—from drought and wildfires to coastal storms and flooding.
Hurricane Irene will cost taxpayers about $1.5 billion in federal disaster relief, the White House said, creating new budget headaches for Congress and adding to the deficit for fiscal year 2012, which begins Oct. 1.
President Barack Obama, on his first tour of areas hit by Hurricane Irene, told residents of northern New Jersey that the federal government would provide “all the resources” necessary to help them recover.
Hurricane Irene, a weaker but still powerful storm with Category 1 winds of 85 miles (137 kilometers) an hour, made landfall today near Cape Lookout, North Carolina as it moved up the U.S. East Coast, the National Hurricane Center said in an advisory shortly before 8 a.m. Eastern time.
Hurricane Irene bore down on the U.S. with Category 1-force winds of 90 miles (150 kilometers) an hour, threatening a storm surge as warnings were posted from North Carolina to southern New England, including New York City.