Boston makes moves to combat climate change

By Maya Valentine

Staff Writer

Boston has recently made efforts to mitigate climate change risks in the neighborhoods of Charlestown and East Boston, where the threat of sea level rise and coastal flooding is high. A new Climate Ready Boston report which details the proposed changes was released last month.

As a preventative measure, the city is creating a deployable 7-foot flood wall to surround Charlestown and East Boston.

The Boston Globe spoke to Nasser Brahim, an architecture consultant for the project.

“The wall would measure 30 feet long and could be deployed before storms to prevent flooding,” he said.


According to the report, the wall will be across the portion of the East Boston Greenway underneath Sumner Street, which runs parallel to East Boston’s shoreline. The construction of the wall could protect 4,200 residents and 70 businesses from coastal flooding. It would also shield transportation tunnels. The cost of the wall is an estimated $100,000.

“Climate change is here, it’s happening now,” Mayor, Marty J. Walsh wrote in the report.

More changes include elevating buildings, roadways, and courtyards. The Schrafft Center Waterfront in Charlestown will be redeveloped with “elevated parks, nature-based features, and mixed-use buildings.”

Main Street, in front of the Schrafft Center, is a part of the space that is expected to go under elevation changes.

These long-term measures would cost the city $121-200 million in East Boston and $33-62 million in Charlestown.

Experts say that the previously suspected outcome of climate change has become worse. The Trump Administration published a Climate Science Special Report last Friday expanding on these predictions.

“It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century,” the report said.

Charlestown and East Boston are just the first communities in Boston to embark in these climate change-related infrastructure developments. More changes will come in order for the city to adapt to this urgent threat.