California Planning Guides

This tab features planning guidance aimed at helping Californians plan for climate change. 

Resources are automatically presented by date, but you may also sort by network rating or title. Apply additional filters to narrow the list by sector, climate impact, or target audience.

 

 

18 results are shown below.

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Resource

California's General Plan Guidelines - Environmental Justice Element

June 2020

Developed by California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR), this document (“EJ guidelines”) provides guidance for local governments on integrating an Environmental Justice (EJ) Element into the local General Plan. Senate Bill 1000, an amendment to California Government Code Section 65302, mandates that jurisdictions with disadvantaged communities must incorporate an EJ element into general plans. The EJ guidelines provide a history of EJ in California and associated policies, guidance for policymakers in determining if a general plan must include EJ requirements, and guidance for drafting policies and fulfilling these EJ requirements. The EJ guidelines are included in Chapter 4 (Required Elements) of California’s overall General Plan Guidelines. 

Related Organizations: California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR)

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Paying it Forward: The Path Toward Climate-Safe Infrastructure in California

September 2018

From California’s Climate-Safe Infrastructure Working Group (CSIWG), this report provides a framework for planning for and developing climate resilient infrastructure. The report details the accelerating climate impacts on California’s infrastructure systems and offers short- and long-term recommendations for buildings, water, transportation, and energy infrastructure. Comprehensive guidance is given on the infrastructure design and implementation process that supports climate change mitigation and adaptation, nature-based solutions, and social equity measures.

Related Organizations: California Climate-Safe Infrastructure Working Group

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Defining Vulnerable Communities in the Context of Climate Adaptation

July 2018

This resource guide was developed through the California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program (ICARP). The guide supports planners and decisionmakers in defining or identifying vulnerable communities in a climate change adaptation context.  The report offers a summary of existing statewide climate vulnerability assessment tools to identify these frontline communities, and additional indicators that could be used to assess underlying vulnerability.

Related Organizations: California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR)

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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California Coastal Commission DRAFT Coastal Adaptation Planning Guidance: Residential Development

March 2018

In March 2018, the California Coastal Commission (CCC) released Draft Coastal Adaptation Guidance for Residential Development (Draft Guidance) to provide local governments sea-level rise adaptation strategies and example legal and policy tools for residential development. CCC is an independent, quasi-judicial state agency that exercises oversight for activities affecting California’s coast. Through the Draft Guidance, CCC seeks to provide state and local decisionmakers with tools to address the complexities associated with coastal land uses across approaches to residential development that are compounded by variation in the physical environment. Specifically, the Draft Guidance offers a range of legal and policy tools to help facilitate local planning for resilient shorelines and protect coastal resources, including through potential managed retreat strategies. The guidance explores the advantages and disadvantages of many adaptation options, and offers model policy language that could be used to implement best practices. The guidance and model policy language examples may be useful for other coastal jurisdictions planning for or regulating the impacts of sea-level rise on development as the language can be customized and adapted to specific situations and contexts. This guidance can assist coastal managers, local governments, and planners to address climate impacts within their jurisdictions and improve the resiliency of their coastlines and communities.

Related Organizations: California Coastal Commission

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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CalBRACE Adaptation Toolkit

The CalBRACE Adaptation Toolkit was developed by the California Department of Public Health Office of Health Equity as part of the California Building Resilience for Climate Effects (CalBRACE) project. This database is a collection of tools, reports, guides, and data to help local health departments assess, plan, and monitor in their efforts to reduce and prevent the health risks of climate change. This toolkit is designed for California, but can serve as a useful guide to health departments elsewhere.

Related Organizations: California Department of Public Health

Resource Category: Data and tools

 

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Planning and Investing for a Resilient California - A Guidebook for State Agencies

November 15, 2017

The California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) developed this guidance document to support state agency planning and investment in the context of climate change - as directed by Executive Order B-30-15. The guidance provides state agencies with a process for determining how to integrate climate considerations into state planning and investment decisions. The guidance offers an introduction to climate risks and how to start incorporating them; some common analytical practices; and principles to guide decision making around climate adaptation, community resilience, and social equity.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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California General Plan Guidelines

August 2017

The California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) has completed the first comprehensive update to the State General Plan Guidelines since 2003. The Guidelines are for the preparation and content of general plans for all cities and counties in California. The 2017 version includes legislative changes, new guidance, policy recommendations, and the requirement to incorporate climate change into community planning.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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California Climate Action Team Sea-Level Rise Guidance Document – for use by Caltrans and other State Agencies

March 2013

The State of California Sea-Level Rise Guidance Document was developed by the Coastal and Ocean Working Group of the California Climate Action Team (CO-CAT) to provide guidance for incorporating sea-level rise (SLR) projections into planning and decision-making in California. The guidance provides ranges of SLR for all California agencies, including the Department of Transportation (CalTrans), to be used for risk-based scenario planning and assessments, such as long term transportation planning and vulnerability assessments.

Related Organizations: California Climate Action Team (CAT), State of California

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Caltrans - Addressing Climate Change Adaptation in Regional Transportation Plans: A Guide for California MPOs and RTPAs

February 2013

This guide is intended to be a resource to support metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) and regional transportation planning agencies (RTPAs) in incorporating climate change impacts into their decision-making and planning processes. The guide helps MPOs and RTPAs with assessing risks to transportation assets from different climate stressors, inventorying assets, assessing the vulnerability of assets, and incorporating climate change into long-range planning and investment decisions. To facilitate these processes, the guide includes: background information on climate adaptation, recommended data and information to assist in incorporating climate considerations into regional planning, and a step-by-step process for integrating climate risks into plans.

Related Organizations: California Department of Transportation (Caltrans)

Resource Category: Planning

 

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A Framework for Regulatory Transition: Accommodating Projected Climatic Shifts at the Operational Level - California

October 2012

This briefing paper provides an overview of California's current hydrology and water management practices, the shifts in the state’s hydrology due to climate change, and the changes in the water resources regulatory framework that are needed to adapt. The current regulatory framework described is based on the premise that the hydrological baseline, with accepted levels of year to year and seasonal variability in water flows, is a constant. California's hydrology is being altered by climate change, and the effects are predicted to become even more pronounced over the next several decades, altering this baseline.

Author or Affiliated User: Robert Shibatani

Resource Category: Planning

 

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