25 People Shaping the Future in Tech, Science, Medicine, Activism and More

The inventors, entrepreneurs and disrupters who are changing (and maybe saving) the world one brilliant idea at a time

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Kate Orff: Remapping Cities for Climate Change
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Ethan Hill/Redux19/25

Kate Orff: Remapping Cities for Climate Change

If our cities are going to survive rising seas, we're going to need someone as inventive as Kate Orff. On the south shore of  Staten Island, which was devastated by Hurricane Sandy's storm surge, her landscape-architecture and urban design firm, SCAPE, is constructing a "living breakwater," a series of barriers and wildlife habitats to make the coast more resilient. A project in Lexington, Kentucky, will turn the footprint of a polluted creek into an interactive path spotlighting the region's unique limestone. In Brooklyn's notoriously polluted Gowanus Canal, SCAPE aims to reintroduce native oysters, as an all-natural filtration system. "It's probably overwhelming for the next generation, given the problems they've inherited," Orff says. "I try to match this anxiety with projects that enable people to feel like they're participating in a process to change their cities and communities." JB

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