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Washington DC: Targeting Urban Heat Islands

August 2015

This case study discusses how Washington DC is preparing for the impacts of climate change including sea-level rise, increasing flood risks, and heat waves. The case study explores how District agencies integrated considerations of climate change when developing the city's Sustainable DC plan, which was developed through an interagency working group.  This effort spurred the development of a city-wide vulnerability assessment and adaptation plan.  The case study also explores the District’s efforts to reduce urban heat islands by making grants to pilot the use of cool roofs, implementing the Smart Roof Initiative to retrofit District-owned buildings, and adopting of a new Green Building Code.

Related Organizations: Georgetown Climate Center

Author or Affiliated User: Sara Hoverter

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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The Ethics of Traditional Knowledge Exchange in Climate Change Initiatives

July 31, 2015

This essay from the Climate and Traditional Knowledges Workgroup (CTKW) makes the case that climate scientists, academics, policymakers, and others working with tribes to utilize traditional knowledges, need guidelines for ethical conduct for using this knowledge. The essay recognizes traditional knowledges as beneficial to climate change because of indigenous peoples’ unique knowledge of the environment but comments that there are opportunities for abuse.

Related Organizations: The Climate and Traditional Knowledges Workgroup

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Buffalo, New York, Green Code Unified Development Ordinance, Article 7.3.4 Best Management Practice

October 2015

The City of Buffalo, New York’s Unified Development Ordinance now includes a Green Code that requires use of green infrastructure best management practices (BMPs) wherever practical to achieve the Code’s performance-based stormwater retention standards. The ordinance, at Article 7. 3. 4 of Section 7 on Stormwater, specifies infiltration on-site using bioswales, rain gardens, and other strategies; or stormwater capture and reuse through cisterns, green roofs, and other strategies. The ordinance clarifies the order of preference for stormwater management facilities utilizing BMPs, prioritizing conservation of natural areas before on-site infiltration practices, and on-site infiltration practices before capture and reuse practices.

Related Organizations: City of Buffalo, New York

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Green Infrastructure Projects

2016

San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) is implementing multiple green infrastructure projects based on their Urban Watershed Assessment, which will identify green and grey sewer infrastructure improvements over the next twenty years.  The SFPUC recognizes that the sewer system, treating both sewage and stormwater runoff, was not built to withstand the impacts of climate change - such as intense rainstorms that overwhelm the system. The watershed-based planning process is being used to help plan the City’s Sewer System Improvement Program (SSIP), a multi-billion dollar project to to upgrade aging infrastructure, and ensure the reliability and performance of the sewer system.

Related Organizations: San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, City and County of San Francisco, California

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Miami-Dade in Hot Water: Why Building Equitable Climate Resilience is Key to Public Health and Economic Stability in South Florida

January 2016

This Center for American Progress report analyzes many of the climate change vulnerabilities facing Miami-Dade County, Florida, with a focus on the county’s lowest-income residents. The report provides broad policy recommendations for the county to help combat the effects of climate change.

Related Organizations: Center for American Progress

Authors or Affiliated Users: Miranda Peterson, Cathleen Kelly, Madeleine Boel

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Enhancing Community Resilience through Energy Efficiency

October 2015

Enhancing Community Resilience through Energy Efficiency, produced by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, evaluates the effectiveness of energy efficiency as a resiliency strategy. This report aims to aid local governments, businesses, and community decision makers in assessing risk, and integrating energy efficiency into resilience planning.

Related Organizations: American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE)

Authors or Affiliated Users: David Ribeiro, Eric Mackres, Brendon Baatz, Rachel Cluett, Michael Jarrett, Meegan Kelly, Shruti Vaidyanathan

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Model Protocols for Assessing the Impacts of Climate Change on the Built Environment under NEPA and State EIA Laws

August 14, 2015

The Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School published these model protocols for government agencies assessing climate change impacts to determine categorical exclusions (CEs), and while preparing environmental assessments (EAs) and environmental impact statements (EISs). The protocols recommend a precautionary approach to assessing and disclosing impacts and suggest evaluating and disclosing climate change impacts when conducting environmental reviews, using multiple projection scenarios when assessing potential impacts of climate change, having appropriate scope and depth of analysis for the magnitude of risk of a project, and assessing climate impacts in the contexts of a future baseline, the purpose and need of a project, and the potential vulnerability of a project to climate change impacts.

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

Resource Category: Planning

 

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CIRCA Matching Funds Program - Connecticut

This funding program from the Connecticut Institute for Resilience & Climate Adaptation (CIRCA) provides up to $100,000 to Connecticut municipalities, universities, and other organizations for projects assisting Connecticut towns and cities climate change adaptation and resilience.

Related Organizations: Connecticut Institute for Resilience & Climate Adaptation (CIRCA)

Resource Category: Funding

 

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Public-Private Partnership (P3) Model State Legislation

December 2015

The Bipartisan Policy Center created this model legislation to help states pass public-private partnership (P3) enabling laws to encourage private-sector investment in infrastructure (wastewater, transportation, stormwater, and green infrastructure). P3s could be an important tool for helping state and local governments finance the investments they need to make to adapt infrastructure systems.  P3s allow the government to contract with a private sector partner to fulfill one or more traditional government functions, including financing, delivery, operations, and maintenance of public infrastructure.

Related Organizations: Bipartisan Policy Center

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Vermont Economic Resiliency Initiative and Final Report

September 30, 2015

Developed by the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development, the Vermont Economic Resiliency Initiative (VERI) evaluated and ranked Vermont communities where economic activity and the associated infrastructure are at high risk of flooding. The goal of the project is to help communities recover quickly from disasters, minimize interruptions to businesses and the local economy, and reduce flood recovery costs.  The Initiative was designed to provide a foundation to develop community-tailored action plans to reduce the loss of jobs, inventory, revenue, as well as the cost to repair roads, bridges, and other key infrastructure.

Related Organizations: Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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