Florida Chief Resilience Officer Dr. Julia Nesheiwat commended Florida ports for their resiliency planning while laying out her vision for a resilient Florida at an event with Seaports Environmental leaders on Wednesday.
“Florida is ground zero when it comes to resiliency. … It’s important that we take action and influence positive change,” Nesheiwat told the ports leaders. “Seaport resiliency is important. We must plan ahead and put on that resiliency mindset.”
Nesheiwat, appointed by Gov. Ron DeSantis as the state’s first Chief Resilience Officer, also shared her goals to create a framework for a statewide strategy on resiliency. The plan would include lessons learned, best practices and look ahead several decades in Florida’s future to create a master adaptation plan for the state.
“Florida’s 15 seaports are committed to adopting resiliency best practices to prevent disruptions of our transportation networks and ensure the secure travel of people and goods around the state, and the globe,” said Doug Wheeler, President and CEO of the Florida Ports Council. “We are proud to stand with Dr. Nesheiwat and provide any support we can in her critical work across the state.”
Florida’s ports support more than 900,000 jobs across the state, and have a total economic impact of more than $117 billion. Port resiliency allows continued freight movement after a crisis, which may include planning for damage to infrastructure, a lack of fuel, a shortage of workforce and a lack of communication and technology.