SDG 11 Sustainable cities and communitiesRapid urbanization has brought enormous challenges, including growing numbers of slum dwellers, increased air pollution, inadequate basic services and infrastructure, and unplanned urban sprawl, which also make cities more vulnerable to disasters. Better urban planning and management are needed to make the world’s urban spaces more inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.

Hurricane Harvey devastated Houston in 2017 when excessive rainfall flooded large parts of the city. Experts claim that lacking flood resilience was partly to blame for the severity of the flooding. As climate change is creating more extreme weather patterns, these events of heavy rainfall will occur more frequently.

Blue Label is a service that provides detailed mapping of the resilience of urban areas to excessive rainfall. Blue Label scores these areas based on their ability to successfully manage events of heavy rainfall, and allows governmental bodies and businesses in urban areas to better prepare themselves for certain events. Providing them with this information is a vital step to improving the flood resilience of vulnerable areas. Improving the flood resilience of urban areas would significantly mitigate the effects of excessive rainfall, and could potentially prevent disasters like the flooding of Houston from happening in the future. Read more