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Becky Hammer, Project Attorney, Water Program, Washington, DC

Becky Hammer

I grew up in coastal central Florida, and like all other young girls in the Sunshine State, I wanted to become a dolphin trainer when I grew up. This early career aspiration was only one indication of my love for nature and all the critters that live in it. Whether I was climbing trees, swimming in alligator-filled lakes, or collecting seashells at the beach, I developed a strong connection with the environment when I was young -- a connection that has stuck with me ever since. These days, I don't get to spend quite as much time outdoors. I do some occasional camping, even though my dog is vaguely terrified of nature (particularly its scary sounds), and I've got a life goal of visiting all our National Parks (I'm up to 18 so far). But I love that even at my desk-bound day job I'm helping to protect the environment by working at NRDC. The path from Tampa, to Boston (for college and law school at Harvard), to D.C. has been a fairly circuitous one, but now I am thrilled to be here, first as a two-year legal fellow and now as a full-time staff attorney in the NRDC water program. It's not dolphin training, but it's still pretty great.

Recent Posts

Puerto Rico's 2016 Disaster Plan Update: Hard to Predict, But We See Positive Signs (Part 5 of 5)

Posted January 22, 2016 by Becky Hammer

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As I previewed on Monday, this week we're taking an in-depth look at the four U.S. jurisdictions who are required to update their State Hazard Mitigation Plans in 2016 to account for the projected effects of climate change. On Monday...continued

Wyoming's 2016 Disaster Plan Update: Ignoring Climate Change Could Put the Cowboy State at Risk (Part 4 of 5)

Posted January 21, 2016 by Becky Hammer

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As I previewed on Monday, this week we're taking an in-depth look at the four U.S. jurisdictions who are required to update their State Hazard Mitigation Plans in 2016 to account for the projected effects of climate change. On Monday...continued

Wisconsin's 2016 Disaster Plan Update: The Plan Needs Work, and Politics Could Interfere (Part 3 of 5)

Posted January 20, 2016 by Becky Hammer

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As I previewed on Monday, this week we're taking an in-depth look at the four U.S. jurisdictions who are required to update their State Hazard Mitigation Plans in 2016 to account for the projected effects of climate change. Yesterday we...continued

Maryland's 2016 Disaster Plan Update: On the Right Track, but There's Room for Improvement (Part 2 of 5)

Posted January 19, 2016 by Becky Hammer

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As I previewed yesterday, this week we're taking an in-depth look at the four U.S. jurisdictions who are required to update their State Hazard Mitigation Plans in 2016 to account for the projected effects of climate change. Today we're looking...continued

Disaster Plan Updates in 2016: A Critical Opportunity for Climate Change Resilience in Maryland, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and Puerto Rico (Part 1 of 5)

Posted January 18, 2016 by Becky Hammer

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As 2016 kicks off, it's a good time to reflect on the accomplishments of the past year, while also anticipating a preview of what the coming year will bring. We certainly had some big victories to celebrate in 2015. In...continued

It's Time to Fix the Trash Clean-Up Plan for the Anacostia River

Posted October 8, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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The Anacostia River has the dubious distinction of being one of the few waterways in the country that's legally designated as "impaired" by trash pollution. The river - which flows from Maryland, through the District, and eventually into the Potomac...continued

NRDC & Partners Petition EPA to Take Action on Polluted Urban Runoff in Baltimore

Posted September 17, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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If you live anywhere in the mid-Atlantic region, or even if you don't, you probably know that there's a massive effort underway to clean up the Chesapeake Bay. All six states whose lands drain into the Bay, along with the...continued

Tell D.C. That We Deserve Clean Water Before 2154

Posted August 5, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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What would you say if I told you that the District of Columbia's Department of the Environment has proposed a long-term action plan to reduce harmful stormwater pollution so that the District can meet its clean water goals? Sounds great,...continued

We Made DC Water's Green Infrastructure Proposal Better - But There's Still Room for Improvement

Posted July 29, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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Earlier this week, the U.S. Department of Justice concluded the public comment period on DC Water's most recent proposal to change course in its efforts to stop raw sewage from contaminating the waters of our nation's capital. NRDC submitted comments...continued

DC Water Announces New Proposal to Clean Up Rivers Using Green Infrastructure Instead of Tunnels

Posted May 21, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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If you're a fan of the idea of turning our nation's capital into a cleaner, greener city, you should be excited by yesterday's news from DC Water. The water and sewer utility announced that it will use green infrastructure to...continued

Twitter Feud Alert: Michael Brown vs. Resiliency, Climate Science, and Policies That Keep Our Communities Safe

Posted May 8, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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If somebody asked you rank the most epic Twitter feuds, you'd probably mention Taylor Swift vs. Katy Perry, or One Direction vs. that guy who used to be in One Direction (we've all forgotten his name already, right?), or Chris...continued

New York's High Court to Rule on Cleanup Requirements for Hundreds of Rivers, Bays, Lakes

Posted April 9, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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Long Island Sound, the Bronx River, Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, and South Oyster Bay all share something in common - and this is not a club you'd want to join. According to New York State's Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC),...continued

FEMA Finalizes New Requirement for State Disaster Plans to Consider Climate Change Impacts

Posted March 13, 2015 by Becky Hammer

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The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced yesterday afternoon a change in its requirements for State Hazard Mitigation Plans that NRDC has been advocating for nearly three years. These plans, which states develop in order to prepare for future natural disasters,...continued

State Attorneys General Express Strong Support for Clean Water Protection Rule

Posted September 16, 2014 by Becky Hammer

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This morning, a group of Attorneys General representing seven States and the District of Columbia publicly announced their wholehearted support for an important effort by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to restore legal...continued

Obama Announces New Disaster Planning Guidance That Will Make States and Communities Better Prepared for Climate Change

Posted July 16, 2014 by Becky Hammer

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Today President Obama announced that states will soon be required to consider the projected effects of climate change when planning and preparing for natural disasters.  The requirement will be implemented in a revision to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)...continued

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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