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Like Game of Thrones? You’ll Love Game of Floods


The Golden Gate Bridge and the City of San Francisco as seen from the Marin Headlands. Marin County is experiencing some-more visit flooding.
Photo Credit: David Ball/Wikipedia


An underlying tragedy using around HBO’s epic anticipation series “Game of Thrones” has to do with what will occur once winter has come. Game of Floods poses a identical hazard (albeit but the beautiful cast). But you don’t really need the Dragon Queen or Jon Snow to make prepping for meridian disaster fun, do you? That’s what officials in Marin County, California, are banking on.

A report released by the Bay Area county likely that within 15 years, “billions of dollars worth of private and open property—some 700 buildings opposite 50 acres of Marin—will be threatened by flooding.”

Storm swell flooding at Manzanita, a village in Marin County. (image: MarinCounty.org)

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Meanwhile, MarinCounty.org warns that when it comes to sea spin rise, the future is now:

Rising sea levels and some-more serious charge flooding as a outcome of meridian intrusion are impacting us here in Marin County now. Even when the object shines, Marin County already practice some-more visit flooding, both on the Pacific seashore in west Marin and along the brook shorelines, impacting roadways, drainage and utilities, and disrupting people’s lives. These impacts are approaching to boost in magnitude and astringency as sea spin arise accelerates.

In response, Marin officials invited the open to introduce a devise of action. Realizing the need to motivate the open to change their behavior, a organisation from Marin County’s Community Development Agency and Department of Public Works came up with an thought Tyrion would love: Game of Floods. (Learn how to play the game.)

The online personification house for Game of Floods. (image around MarinCounty.org)

The year is 2050 and residents of the illusory Marin Island face approaching disaster as sea levels rise. Players place themselves in the position of formulation commissioners tasked with assisting the cursed islanders strategize ways to minimize drop using singular resources (an bid that has already garnered Marin County a inhabitant endowment for open overdo by the American Planning Association).

Like other apparatus government games such as Pandemic, Game of Floods is all about enlivening partnership against a common threat. This is satisfied by the use of a hexagonal house demarcated by colored flood zones representing areas such as a seabird colony, school or an electrical substation. Players start the diversion by deliberating either to protect, adjust or shelter from an area.

If, say, the organisation decides to go with insurance by building a levee, this competence forestall flooding but will seriously empty the budget. Another option for adapting—dune restoration, for example—will cost a lot less, but have a singular effectiveness. Once accord has been reached, stickers are placed on any territory of the house to simulate the group’s strategy.

The strategy’s success is dynamic by a beam who tallies up the sum costs of the environmental and human impacts of the group’s decisions. This is not your standard winner/loser house game. Instead, the diversion is meant to be played mixed times, ideally at a internal assembly or workshop, so village members can start to hang their heads around the pros and cons of several instrumentation methods and the broader implications of rising tides.

“We face formidable and formidable decisions in responding to increasing threats of sea spin rise, and personification the diversion helps people spin the partners in the process,” Roger Leventhal, a Marin County open works operative who helped come up with the idea, explained to the Times-Picayune.

Tidal Marsh nearby Hamilton Fields, Marin County. The county is already experiencing some-more visit flooding. (image: MarinCounty.org)

The pivotal to bargain is in the deliberation. “It’s the first instrumentation diversion I’m wakeful of,” pronounced Alex Westhoff, a planner from the Marin County village growth group who co-devised the game, in an talk with Citylab. As Westhoff explained, by getting the open to know the problem of his pursuit by framing outcomes by specific actions and their consequences, they can grow informed with the reality of rising sea change. In turn, this hazard becomes a some-more discernible reality, which means that the open starts to know their own role in mitigating disasters. The fact that the diversion is also “fun and engaging” positively helps, combined Westhoff.

The first turn of Game of Floods was played during a 2015 seminar held in West Marin. From there, the diversion took to the highway furloughed conferences around California, where it shortly got the courtesy of universities and refuge societies, not to discuss the EPA and FEMA. In total, Westhoff estimates that Game of Floods has been played by about 1,500 people in workshops and classrooms around the country. More recently interjection to extend funding, Marin County is branch the game’s spontaneous print-it-yourself wrapping into an tangible box set that will be accessible for purchase.

How much can a diversion make a difference, you may ask?

“We’ve played the diversion in a far-reaching accumulation of settings,” pronounced Westhoff, “and consistently the appetite and unrestrained that participants show gives us wish that we can make genuine progress.” To this Westhoff combined that the diversion has already desirous Marin County locals to make some-more of a accordant bid to revive “eroded beaches with fresh silt and oyster habitats.” Feedback from players has also even helped the internal planners consider of choice strategies for real-world adaptations.

“It all boils down to getting a review started about a very critical topic,” Roberta Rewers, a orator for the APA, pronounced to Citylab. “It visualizes what could occur in a community, and it gets people meditative about how choices have impacts.”

We’ve already come too distant to forestall the effects of meridian change. But if we start traffic with those effects in the present, we can be some-more prepared for the future. Game of Floods is a good start, and will hopefully enthuse some-more movement in the genuine world, before winter really comes.

Robin Scher is a freelance author from South Africa now formed in New York. He tweets intermittently @RobScherHimself.



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