WASHINGTON, La – U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, R-La., along with U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, D-Ore, urged the Biden administration to support a supplemental disaster appropriations effort to direct urgently needed federal resources to communities throughout America that are struggling to recover from hurricanes, floods, wildfires, and other natural disasters that have occurred since the beginning of 2020.
“According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, 2020 shattered the previous annual record for ‘billion dollar’ disasters. In 2020, 22 ‘billion-dollar events’ cost the nation a combined $95 billion in damages,” the senators wrote. “Gulf and Atlantic States experienced the most active hurricane season on record. In early 2021, a severe winter storm disrupted utility service to millions throughout the South and Midwest.”
“While in most cases the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has delivered substantial emergency relief to affected communities, the scale of natural disasters experienced in 2020 demands additional resources that can only be delivered through a disaster supplemental,” they continued.
A record for the most named storms in 2020, 30 in a season, with five making landfall in Louisiana, also a record. The strongest of which, Laura a Category 4 hurricane, devastated Lake Charles, La. and was followed by Hurricane Delta, a Category 2 hurricane, just over a month later. Louisiana farmers were also hit with catastrophic damage to livestock, crops and structures during unprecedented winter storms.
Read the full letter here or below.