Sonoma County, California Climate Readiness Plan - Climate Action 2020 and Beyond

Sonoma County, California developed their Climate Action 2020 and Beyond plan primarily to address greenhouse gas mitigation opportunities for the county, but also to initiate adaptation planning. A chapter of the report focused on climate change adaptation is offered as the Climate Readiness Plan. This plan provides a vulnerability assessment that evaluates climate impacts on three key community resource areas - people and social systems, built systems, and natural and working lands. This chapter also discusses adaptation solutions already underway in Sonoma, and provides general adaptation goals and strategies as a starting point for the County to respond to the impacts identified through the vulnerability assessment. 

The primary climate change impacts that are projected to occur in Sonoma County and detailed in the report include:

  • Higher Average Temperatures and More Extreme Heat Events,
  • More Frequent and Intense Droughts,
  • More Frequent and Intense Wildfire,
  • Fewer Winter Nights that Freeze,
  • Increased Risk of Extreme Floods, and
  • Sea Level Rise including - More Frequent Coastal Flooding, Increased Erosion, and Saltwater Intrusion.

The Climate Vulnerabilities in Sonoma County section explores significant vulnerabilities, as related to each of these climate impacts. Three primary categories of community resources are assessed (people and social systems, built systems, and natural and working lands) with the climate effects identified for each focal area. 

A sampling of existing local efforts that increase resilience to climate change in Sonoma is provided within the sectors of Public Health, Social Vulnerability, Energy, Water, Food, Transportation, and Natural and Working Lands.

Table 6-6: Climate Change Adaptation Goals and Opportunities explores potential climate adaptation strategies for community resources. For example, one of the Goals is to: Protect coastal, bayside, and inland buffer zones. Opportunities listed in the table to reach this particular goal include to:

  • Protect, expand, and enhance wetlands, water source areas, fire management zones, and flood zones.
  • Review/revise land management plans, development codes, parks plans, and prevention and response plans for floods and fires; and
  • Reduce non-climate stressors in these areas.

Publication Date: July 11, 2016

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  • Assessment

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