Florida Chief Resilience Officer Dr. Julia Neshiewat shared her vision for a resilient Florida with Seaports Environmental Stewardship leaders on Wednesday.
“Florida is Ground Zero when it comes to resiliency. … It’s important that we take action and influence positive change,” Dr. Neshiewat told the ports leaders at the event. “Seaport resiliency is important. We must plan ahead and put on that resiliency mindset.”
Dr. Neshiewat commended Florida’s ports for leading the nation in resiliency for sea level rise and natural disasters, along with making infrastructure investments to accommodate the use of natural gas as an environmentally friendly fuel.
In addition, she shared her office’s goal to create a framework for a statewide strategy on resiliency. The plan would include lessons learned, best practices and look ahead several decades in Florida’s future to create a master adaptation plan for the state.
“Florida’s 15 seaports are committed to adopting resiliency best practices to prevent disruptions of our transportation networks and ensure the secure travel of people and goods around the state, and the globe,” said Doug Wheeler, President and CEO of the Florida Ports Council. “We are proud to stand with Dr. Neshiewat and provide any support we can in her critical work across the state.”
Florida’s ports support more than 900,000 jobs across the state, and have a total economic impact of more than $117 billion. Port resiliency allows continued freight movement after a crisis, which may include planning for damage to infrastructure, a lack of fuel, a shortage of workforce and a lack of communication and technology.
About the Florida Ports Council
The Florida Ports Council is the professional association of Florida’s public seaports, providing advocacy, leadership and research on seaport-related issues before state and federal government. Florida’s ports support nearly 900,000 jobs in the state and contribute $117.6 billion to the state’s economy each year. The Florida Ports Council administers the Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development Council, which is required to provide a 5-year Florida Seaport Mission Plan annually according to Florida Statute. For more information, visit www.flaports.org.