Federal Emergency Management Agency officials say that much of New Orleans is considered a flood plain, and if structures are rebuilt in those parts of the city, they will have to be elevated substantially. “Absolutely, yes,” said Ed Pasterick, a FEMA specialist in Washington, D.C. “There may be decisions to be made as to whether large areas of the city can or should be rebuilt.”
It will take at least a year before residents and businesses can even start to rebuild in New Orleans.
“The infrastructure is gone,” he said. “There’s no water and sewer lines anymore. There’s no power poles, no electrical wires. In order for them to rebuild, they have to put all that in.
“But first they have to remove the hazardous materials.”
A million or more people now have no home, no job, and thus, no money coming in. Louisiana has already said they have no idea how they will pay for the unemployment claims. Their norm is 170,000 or so jobless, they are expecting 750,000 to one million now.
The scope of this tragedy is staggering, and the response from DC has mostly been PR spin and crickets.