Lawmakers need to address climate change to reduce natural disaster severity: Delaware Riverkeeper van Rossum

Policy makers need to consider the impact of climate change on the frequency and severity of natural disasters like floods, according to Delaware Riverkeeper Maya van Rossum.

This past weekend, Houghs Creek, a Tributary to the Delaware River in Bucks County, experienced swiftly rising flood waters that overwhelmed travelers in their vehicles, causing the deaths of six adults and sweeping away two children who have not yet been recovered.

Van Rossum says flooding associated with the Delaware River and its tributaries has increased over the three decades she’s been Riverkeeper. She says Pennsylvania continues to perpetuate and grow fossil fuel extraction and use, and as a result is a major contributor of climate changing greenhouse gas emissions.

SBN News Director Steve Lubetkin spoke with van Rossum about how climate change due to fossil fuel extraction and use is leading to more severe natural disasters like the Bucks County flash flood this weekend. You can hear the conversation in the player below.

Maya K. van Rossum has served as the Delaware Riverkeeper and leader for the Delaware Riverkeeper Network since 1994. The role of the Delaware Riverkeeper is to give the Delaware River, and the communities that depend upon it and appreciate it, a voice at every decision-making table that could provide help or do harm. The Delaware Riverkeeper Network that van Rossum leads is the only citizen action organization that works the entire length and breadth of the Delaware River and its watershed, speaking and working for both its protection and its restoration. The Delaware Riverkeeper Network has its main office in Bristol, PA and can be found on the web at van Rossum’s blog can be found at