Science in Society Award

It is an honor to have been selected by the National Association of Science Writers for their Science in Society Award for my Urban Omnibus article on managed retreat in Staten Island.


Below is an excerpt from the press release:


“Leaving the Sea: Staten Islanders Experiment with Managed Retreat” was published Feb. 11, 2015, in the online Urban Omnibus. In the article, Rush covers the debate in Staten Island communities over whether to stay put or retreat from the shoreline, in the face of sea-level rise and stronger storms arising from climate change. She explores the costs and benefits of the strategy of “managed retreat,” whereby homeowner buyouts address the realities of climate change in vulnerable coastal communities. The judges commented, “Truly local reporting is crucial not just during natural disasters, when the national media may be present, but during the long, often painful and messy aftermath. That’s when decisions are made, too often without scrutiny, that can shape the nature of a town and the fates of its residents for generations to come. In her article, Rush follows one such set of decisions, made after Hurricane Sandy’s floodwaters receded. She does so with tenacity, commitment, and empathy. Her richly reported feature sheds light on the tough choices and many policy and administrative complexities impacting one flooded neighborhood. In so doing, the piece provides a clarifying look at unresolved facets of local-scale resilience and recovery that small communities around the world are likely to encounter as the impacts of climate change intensify in the coming years.”