Adapting to climate change by raising your house

Like, on stilts. Marketplace – the NPR show that became a favorite commute listen and eventually a favorite podcast commute listen – discusses how a woman who spent $97.5k on her house ended up spending $100k (mostly from a FEMA grant) to raise it more than 8 feet.

Half a dozen workers, drenched in sweat from the July heat and covered in mud, have tunneled under the house and set up piles of wood blocks, or cribbing, along with 38 hydraulic jacks. The men crawled in and out, making small adjustments, while a supervisor eyed dozens of gauges. “He’s adjusting all the pressures on each hydraulic cylinder individually,” explained Jason Soto. “That way when we lift the house, it guarantees it lifts at a constant rate.”

“What does it take to lift a house? A lot of money, sweat and hydraulic jacks.”

Marketplace also has a podcast series on adapting to climate change called How We Survive. Season one is on making better batteries for electric vehicles and improve the electric grid; season two is on rising water levels, especially in Florida and the Gulf Coast.


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