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Resilience and Solar Assessment Tool - Washington D.C.

2017

In 2017, the District of Columbia’s Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) launched the country’s first resilience tool to identify opportunities for protecting residents in multifamily affordable housing from heat waves, flooding, and other climate change impacts. The city already faces a tight housing market with significant shortages in affordable housing. Climate change is expected to only exacerbate this pressure by increasing the cost of maintaining comfortable homes in the summer and protecting households from flooding. In order to help advance the goals of the city’s climate adaptation plan, DOEE worked with nonprofit partners to develop the Resilience and Solar Assessment Tool. The tool consists of a series of questionnaires that building owners can use to identify the building’s resilience to potential climate change impacts, examining characteristics like accessibility, emergency management plans, and electrical, mechanical, and plumbing equipment. Based on the outcome of the assessment, the tool provides additional recommendations for implementing resilience strategies at varying cost and scale. 

Resource Category: Data and tools

 

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U.S. Military on the Front Lines of Rising Seas

July 27, 2016

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) has analyzed the exposure and vulnerability of coast military installations to tidal flooding and sea level rise through the end of the century. 18 East and Gulf Coast sites in Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington D. C. were selected to be representative of coastal installations nationwide in terms of size, geographic distribution and military branch. US Military on the Front Lines of Rising Seas includes an executive summary, a two-page fact sheet, and individual fact sheets for each of the 18 bases.

Resource Category: Assessments

 

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Staying Green: Strategies to Improve Operations and Management of Green Infrastructure in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Staying Green discusses the barriers to and recommendations for effective operation and maintenance of green infrastructure practices for stormwater management. Green infrastructure (GI) requires proper maintenance to function effectively and continue to provide climate change adaptation benefits, such as urban heat island and flood mitigation. This report offers specific strategies, based on examples from throughout the Chesapeake Bay region and the country, to improve the operations and maintenance of GI practices.

Author or Affiliated User: Stacey Detwiler

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Washington DC Green Zone Environmental Program

January 2016

The Green Zone Environmental Program (GZEP) is a program run by the District of Columbia’s Department of Energy and Environment that provides young adults aged 14 to 24 with summer careers in clean energy. Every year, over 300 youth and young adults throughout the District -- with a focus on recruitment from vulnerable, under-represented communities -- enroll in a six-week training and educational Program. The DOEE and GZEP partner with local businesses to expose participants of the Program to both classroom and hands-on training in the areas of stormwater management, solar energy installments, green infrastructure construction, landscaping, and more.

Resource Category: Education and Outreach

 

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Resilience for Free: How Solar+Storage Could Protect Multifamily Affordable Housing from Power Outages at Little or No Net Cost

October 14, 2015

This report from the Clean Energy Group uses project data for buildings in New York, Chicago, and Washington, D. C. , to examine the financial case for installing solar photovoltaics (PV) and battery storage systems (“solar+storage”) to support multifamily affordable housing. With the right market structures and incentives, solar+storage systems can provide an economic return, on par with energy efficiency or stand-alone solar. They can also help make affordable housing energy resilient by guaranteeing power for common area lighting, water, and communications.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Lew Milford, Robert Sanders, Seth Mullendore

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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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.

Author or Affiliated User: Sara Hoverter

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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DC Water Green Infrastructure, Clean Rivers Project (District of Columbia/Washington D.C., Virginia, Maryland)

May 2015

The District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water), the District of Columbia, the U. S. Department of Justice and the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have established an agreement which allows DC Water to pursue an integrated green/gray infrastructure approach to reduce combined sewer overflows into rivers and to capture rainwater. The agreement addresses water quality and supply issues in the Rock Creek and Potomac watersheds which traverse Maryland, Virginia, and the District.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Army Corps North Atlantic Coast Comprehensive Study – Main Report

January 2015

This US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) study, released in January 2015, assesses flood risk from coastal storms for the North Atlantic coast from Virginia to Maine – the states and communities affected by Hurricane Sandy – and recommends strategies for reducing those flood risks. The study was designed to help Sandy-affected states and communities better understand how flood risks will change as a result of climate change and sea-level rise.   It captures the latest scientific information on sea-level rise, and provides state, local, and tribal governments with tools to help them prepare for changing flood risks and apply the lessons learned from the study.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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11th Street Bridge Equitable Development Plan, Washington D.C.

2015

The 11th Street Bridge Equitable Development Plan was developed in 2015 to address community development concerns around ongoing construction of the 11th Street Bridge Park, the city’s first elevated public park connecting Capitol Hill/Navy Yard in Northwest D.C. and the historic Anacostia/Fairlawn neighborhoods in Southeast D.C. – a project that has spurred concerns about investment-induced displacement and preserving the surrounding community’s environmental, economic, and cultural assets. The Equitable Development Plan proposes a cross-section of strategies to combat systemic inequities and displacement, including in housing, workforce development, small business development, and arts/culture. The plan, conducted in parallel with other local initiatives like the Douglass Community Land Trust, could help members of the community retain control of development and mitigate gentrification pressures, providing lessons across the city even as property owners and developers consider installing resilience upgrades and other investments to local housing stock.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Washington, DC Flood Levee System Improvements

December 2014

To prevent water from the Potomac and Anacostia rivers from flooding downtown Washington, D. C. , the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is improving the levee system along the north side of the National Mall, running from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument.   A levee system was originally erected to protect the District in 1939, following a major flood event in 1936.   This project will improve the levee system through a series of upgrades: a permanent closure at 23rd Street and Fort McNair, and the installation of a more robust removable wall, which will provide flood protection but also allow for traffic flow on 17th street between flood events.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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