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U.S. Clean Water Rule

June 1, 2015

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have finalized the Clean Water Rule, designed to protect and restore water sources nationwide. The rule will redevelop clear safeguards against unregulated pollution and destruction for nearly two million miles of streams and tens of millions of acres of wetlands in the continental U.S.

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

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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HB0514/SB0258 Maryland Commission on Climate Change

June 1, 2015

In May 2015, the Maryland legislature passed legislation (HB0514/SB0258) codifying the Maryland Commission on Climate Change.  The Commission is charged with advising the Governor and General Assembly on ways to mitigate the causes of, prepare for, and adapt to the consequences of climate change. The measure requires the Commission to establish specified working groups and for the Commission members and working group members to be appointed and the Commission to be convened on or before July 1, 2016.

Related Organizations: State of Maryland, University of Maryland

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Florida SB 1094: “An act relating to the peril of flood”

May 21, 2015

On May 21, 2015, Governor Rick Scott signed into law Florida Senate Bill 1094, “An Act relating to the peril of flood. ”  SB 1094 requires consideration of future flood risk from storm surge and sea level rise in certain portions of local government comprehensive plans.  In accordance with SB 1094, Florida Statute section 163. 3178(2)(f)1 now includes sea-level rise as one of the causes of flood risk that must be addressed in the “redevelopment principles, strategies, and engineering solutions” to reduce flood risk.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Metro Boston Climate Preparedness Commitment

May 13, 2015

Mayors from fourteen cities in the metropolitan Boston region adopted the “Metro Boston Climate Preparedness Commitment” on May 13, 2015, agreeing to collaborate to prepare the region for the impacts of climate change. The fourteen municipalities will work together to coordinate actions necessary for adapting trans-boundary critical infrastructure systems, to develop best practices for local governments and policy recommendations for state and federal partners, and to identify funding and investment solutions to take regional action.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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New Orleans Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance, Article 23: Landscape, Stormwater Management, and Screening

May 2015

In 2015, the New Orleans City Council adopted a new Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance (CZO). Article 23 of the CZO addresses landscaping and stormwater management with the intended purpose of reducing the urban heat island effect, decreasing flooding and strains on the existing drainage system, improving water conservation, and protecting public health, safety, and welfare. Article 23 of the CZO does not directly mention climate change or climate adaptation, but does specify regulations that can improve the cities ability to manage stormwater in the face of increased precipitation and mitigate heat in the face of rising temperatures though green infrastructure.

Related Organizations: City of New Orleans, Louisiana

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Legal Tools for Climate Adaptation Advocacy: Securities Law

May 2015

This report from Nina Hart of Columbia Law School focuses on how governments and investors can use financial disclosure as a tool to incentivize or pressure publicly traded companies to undertake climate change adaptation measures. The chapter explains why financial disclosure is a powerful tool, describes the relevant regulatory schemes, and outlines both regulatory or enforcement and market-based strategies for improving corporate responses to climate change.

Related Organizations: Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Columbia Law School

Author or Affiliated User: Nina Hart

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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California EO B-30-15: Establishing 2030 CA emissions target, Adaptation initiatives

April 29, 2015

In April 2015, Governor Edmund Gerald "Jerry" Brown signed Executive Order B-30-15 (EO) establishing a new interim greenhouse gas reduction target of 40 percent below 1990 levels and directing state agencies to take additional actions to prepare for the impacts of climate change. The EO requires consideration of climate change impacts in the State's Infrastructure Investment Plan and in all state planning and investment decisions. The EO also sets principles for the states action to address climate impacts and calls for monitoring of state progress.

Related Organizations: State of California

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Massachusetts Port Authority Resiliency Program and Floodproofing Design Guide

April 2015

In 2014, the Massachusetts Port Authority (“Massport”) began the Massport Resiliency Program to protect Massport transportation facilities from flooding hazards caused by extreme storms and rising sea levels as a result of climate change. The program seeks to better prepare for the impacts of climate change by incorporating resilience principles into Massport’s business strategy and operations. As a part of this program, Massport created a Floodproofing Design Guide (“Guide”) that will help make the built environment resilient to sea-level rise and major flood events.

Related Organizations: Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport)

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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New York State Water Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2015

March 31, 2015

Under the New York State (NYS) 2015 - 2016 budget agreement approved on March 31, 2015 by the state legislature and Governor Cuomo’s administration, $200 million will be allocated to the NYS Water Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2015 to assist municipalities in funding water quality infrastructure projects - some of which is earmarked for sea level rise resiliency projects. 

Related Organizations: New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation, New York State Department of Health

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Virginia SB 1443: comprehensive plan sea-level rise strategies

March 16, 2015

In March 2015, Governor McAuliffe signed Virginia legislation (SB 1443) to require all localities  in the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission region to incorporate consideration of projected sea-level rise and recurrent flooding in updates to local comprehensive plans and to develop strategies to combat risks from sea-level rise, beginning July 1, 2015.  The law directs the Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Department of Emergency Management, the Marine Resources Commission, Old Dominion University, and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science to provide technical assistance to any locality in the region upon request.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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