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Florida Senate Bill (S.B.) 1954: Statewide Flooding and Sea-Level Rise Resilience

May 13, 2021

On May 12, 2021, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed Senate Bill (S. B. ) 1954, Statewide Flooding and Sea-Level Rise Resilience, into law (Fla. Stat. § 380. 093 (2021)). Among other provisions, the law establishes the Resilient Florida Grant Program to build regional and local resilience and requires the state develop a statewide flood vulnerability and sea-level rise data assessment and Statewide Flooding and Sea-Level Rise Resilience Plan.  The purpose of the law is to determine flooding risks related to increased precipitation, extreme weather, and sea-level rise and initiate a coordinated statewide effort to adapt to these risks.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Florida Senate Bill (S.B.) 2514: Resilient Florida Trust Fund

May 13, 2021

On May 12, 2021, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed Senate Bill (S.B. 2514) into law creating the Resilient Florida Trust Fund (fund) within the Department of Environmental Protection (Fla. Stat. § 380.0935 (2021)). Accompanying S.B. 1954, the fund was established to support the Resilient Florida Grant Program and the development of the Statewide Flooding and Sea-Level Rise Resilience PlanFunds from the Resilient Florida Trust Fund can also be put toward administrative and operational costs of the Florida Flood Hub for Applied Research and Innovation and for other coastal resilience initiatives. The fund is set to expire on July 1, 2025.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Hawaii Highways Climate Adaptation Action Plan

May 2021

In May 2021, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) Highways Division released the Hawaii Highways Climate Adaptation Action Plan. The Action Plan will serve as a roadmap to make Hawaii’s highways more resilient to climate change based on a forward-looking analysis that recognizes the impacts of climate change-related hazards on transportation assets. This is a noteworthy step for Hawaii, which is updating its traditional highway design and planning processes.  The Action Plan is a useful example for state departments of transportation, local metropolitan planning organizations, and other planners and policymakers looking to incorporate climate change impacts and considerations into transportation exposure assessments, plans, and designs.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool

May 2021

The Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool (CEJST) was created pursuant to Executive Order 14008, Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad. EO 14008 required the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) to create a “geospatial Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool… and interactive maps highlighting disadvantaged communities. ” A beta version of the CEJST was published along with the WHEJAC Recommendations to identify disadvantaged communities for the Justice40 Initiative.

Resource Category: Data and tools

 

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Massachusetts Climate Resilience Design Standards Tool

April 21, 2021

On April 21, 2021, the State of Massachusetts, under the Governor Charlie Baker Administration, launched the Climate Resilience Design Standards Tool, an online platform that enables state and local governments to assess climate change considerations when designing and siting development and infrastructure projects. Specifically, the tool offers guidance for state-funded and other projects by creating project-specific climate vulnerability assessments and providing general guidance for ways that the state and local governments can consider making a project more climate resilient.

Resource Category: Data and tools

 

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DOT Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) Grant Program

2021

 

 

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Rhode Island 2021 Act on Climate

April 10, 2021

On April 10, 2021, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo signed the Rhode Island 2021 Act on Climate into law, amending the Resilient Rhode Island Act of 2014 by making mandatory greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions targets more enforceable, adding a goal of net-zero by 2050, and requiring actions to promote equity and environmental justice. The new law requires the state Climate Council — established by the 2014 bill — to develop and periodically update a plan to reach these goals. New language also requires the state Council’s plan to include an equitable transition, and address environmental injustices.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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BIA Tribal Climate Resilience Program

2014

The Department of the Interior’s (DOI) Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) launched the Tribal Climate Resilience Program in 2014 to help tribes prepare for climate change. Direct funding from the now BIA's Branch of Tribal Climate Resilience (TCR) supports federally-recognized Tribes and Alaska Native villages in climate resilience planning through competitive awards for climate training, adaptation planning, vulnerability assessments, supplemental monitoring, capacity building, and ocean and coastal management planning. 

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Mecklenburg County, North Carolina: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services, Flood Risk Assessment and Reduction Community Guidebook

April 6, 2021

The Flood Risk Assessment and Reduction Community Guidebook was developed as part of an initiative led by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services (CMSWS) of North Carolina, with support from the U. S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Flood Apex Program, to help communities nationwide to adapt to flooding. Based on years of developing the CMSWS flood mitigation program and tools, the Community Guidebook details the process of acquiring data to assess flood hazards and risk, and to evaluate and prioritize strategies to mitigate that risk.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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U.S. Department of Transportation Infrastructure For Rebuilding America (INFRA) Program

The Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) grant funding program exists to provide federal funding support to nationally or regionally significant highway and freight projects. In reviewing grant applications, the U. S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) prioritizes projects that support economic vitality, promote or deploy innovation, allow federal funding to be leveraged in attracting private investment, and support accountability. For the first time, however, in 2021 USDOT also began prioritizing projects that promote racial equity, and those that address climate change and environmental justice.

Resource Category: Funding

 

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