North Carolina governor says state has ‘front-row seat’ to climate change

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D) on Sunday said his coastal state has a “front-row seat” to climate change, adding that he is working to build stronger and more resilient infrastructure to combat the effects of global warming.

“North Carolina has had a front-row seat when it comes to the effects of climate change,” Cooper told moderator Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “We are making sure that we become a clean energy safe haven and that we are paying attention to resiliency.”

Cooper made the comments after the remnants of Hurricane Ian arrived in North Carolina.

Ian lost its hurricane status but has caused damage in North Carolina as a tropical storm. Cooper attributed the death of at least four people to the storm, according to local outlet ABC11.

Ian made landfall as a Category 4 storm Wednesday in Florida, devastating the Fort Myers area.

With hurricanes expected to get more intense because of climate change, Cooper on Sunday said coastal communities are “vulnerable.”

“So what we’re doing is making sure that we are using strategies like elevation and even buyouts,” Cooper said. “It has just become better to make sure that we create green space with the place where homes and businesses used to be to soak up water that may come from a river flood and then to relocate people.

“We also need to make sure our electric grid is more resilient,” the governor added. “We’re gonna be working on updating our grid, making sure that we are more resilient into the future.”

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