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Adapting Water Law to Public Necessity: Reframing Climate Change Adaptation as Emergency Response and Preparedness

September 17, 2010

The article argues that viewing climate change impacts on water supply as an ongoing emergency could provide a more productive framework for initiating and implementing adaptation strategies. Classifying climate change’s impacts on water supply as a real crisis allows adaptation planning to become a form of emergency preparedness, and could provide needed flexibility both legally and politically. An analysis of property rights barriers in the context of implementing adaptation strategies to help with the water supply crisis is provided.

Related Organizations: Vermont Journal of Environmental Law, Florida State University College of Law

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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A Greater LA: Climate Action Framework - Water

December 2016

The Water section of Los Angeles County, California's Climate Action Framework (A Greater LA) identifies climate change impacts on water resources in the Los Angeles County region, and regional-scale priorities for improving the reliability of the region's water supply under future conditions. The Framework, which also contains sections for four other sectors, was developed by the Los Angeles Regional Collaborative for Climate Action and Sustainability (LARC) to support more coordinated and collaborative regional policies relating to climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Related Organizations: Los Angeles Regional Collaborative for Climate Action and Sustainability (LARC)

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Too Hot to Handle: Climate Change and Agricultural Water Use

November 16, 2011

This paper discusses the role of irrigated agriculture in the western United States.   Climate change in the west is expected to result in a more arid climate and therefore strain the already extended water uses in the region.   Because of climate change and other factors, the report suggests that all water uses, including long-standing agricultural water rights, need to be re-examined. The author questions the region’s continued use of most of its water for irrigation, and the appropriate role of federal and state policy makers in responding to this environmental challenge.

Related Organizations: University of New Mexico

Author or Affiliated User: Denise Fort

Resource Category: Monitoring and Reporting

 

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Water Needs and Strategies for a Sustainable Future: 2010 Progress Report

June 2010

This report from the Western Governor's Association, along with the 2006 report, "Water Needs and Strategies for a Sustainable Future," and the 2008 report, "Water Needs and Strategies for a Sustainable Future: Next Steps" includes consensus recommendations to promote the cooperation between western states and federal, local, and private sector partners in addressing the challenges of over-appropriated watersheds, population growth, land use changes, water needs for in-stream uses, and water supply and water management strategies.

Related Organizations: Western States Water Council (WSWC), Western Governors' Association (WGA)

Resource Category: Monitoring and Reporting

 

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Climate Change Effects on Stream and River Biological Indicators: A Preliminary Analysis (Final Report)

March 2008

The Clean Water Act mandates that states assess the biological, chemical, and physical condition of their aquatic resources using biological indicators that compare reference and non-reference sites to measure condition. The Office of Water developed guidance documents for establishing biocriteria in rivers and streams, lakes, estuaries, and wetlands, and is developing biocriteria for coral reefs. Climate change is projected to affect aquatic ecosystems through changes in water temperature, hydrological cycles, and degree days.

Related Organizations: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Resource Category: Monitoring and Reporting

 

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North Carolina Climate Retrieval and Observations Network of the Southeast (CRONOS) Database

The North Carolina Climate Retrieval and Observations Network of the Southeast (CRONOS) Database, developed by the State Climate Office of North Carolina, enables the public to quickly and easily retrieve archived observations from 37,790 (12,974 active) weather sites in and around North Carolina.

Related Organizations: State Climate Office of North Carolina

Resource Category: Monitoring and Reporting

 

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U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Snow Survey and Water Supply Forecasting

The Snow Survey and Water Supply Forecasting program provides western states and Alaska with information on future water supplies (January - June for the current year). USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service field staff collect and analyze data on depth and water equivalent of the snowpack at more than 1,200 mountain sites and estimate annual water availability, spring runoff, and summer streamflows. Individuals, organizations, and state and federal agencies use these forecasts for decisions relating to agricultural production, fish and wildlife management, municipal and industrial water supply, urban development, flood control, recreation power generation, and water quality management.

Related Organizations: National Weather Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Resource Category: Monitoring and Reporting

 

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Santa Clara Valley Water District 2012 Water Supply and Infrastructure Master Plan

October 2012

The Santa Clara Valley Water District (SCVWD) 2012 Water Supply and Infrastructure Master Plan is the water district’s strategy for providing a reliable supply of water for Santa Clara County, California. The Plan identifies the District strategy to continue investments to meet the county’s future water supply needs through at least 2035. The Plan discusses managing for climate change impacts with a focus on drought, and calls for further climate adaptation planning by the District.

Related Organizations: Santa Clara Valley Water District

Authors or Affiliated Users: Tracy Hemmeter, Erin Baker

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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Addressing Climate Change in Long-Term Water Resources Planning and Management: User Needs for Improving Tools and Information

January 2011

This report, from the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) - as part of the Climate Change and Water Working Group (CCAWWG) - identifies the needs of local, state, and federal water management agencies for climate change information and tools to support long-term water resources planning.

Related Organizations: Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)

Authors or Affiliated Users: Levi D. Brekke, Kathleen White, J. Rolf Olsen, Edwin Townsley, David Williams, Charles Hennig, Curt Brown, Rod Wittler

Resource Category: Planning

 

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