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Building Resilience to Coastal Hazards and Climate Change in Hawaii

April 2019

From May 2016 until April 2019, the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources and the Office of Planning partnered with the University of Hawaii Sea Grant College Program to create three tools that support adaptation at the local level: an interactive data mapthe Hawaii Sea-Level Rise Viewer, and two guidance documentsIntegrating Coastal Hazards and Sea-Level Rise Resilience in Community Planning and Guidance for Disaster Recovery Preparedness in Hawaii. Much of Hawaii’s population and development exist on low-lying coastal plains that are vulnerable to erosion, flooding, and inundation. Building on the state’s 2017 Hawaii Sea Level Rise Vulnerability and Adaptation Report, the complementary tools are aimed at helping communities better prepare for future sea-level rise and other climate change impacts.

Resource Category: Data and tools

 

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Duwamish Valley Action Plan - Seattle, Washington

January 2018

In 2018, Seattle’s Office of Sustainability & Environment, in collaboration with the Office of Planning and Community Development, released the Duwamish Valley Action Plan. The Plan lays out a variety of different strategies and projects that should be implemented in the South Park and Georgetown neighborhoods of Seattle. The Plan itself is grounded in equity considerations and environmental justice principles, which results in recommendations that will benefit the communities most affected by the impacts of climate change and systematic racism. The published document is a result of the input of over 500 stakeholders within the Duwamish Valley Region – outreach that began very early in the creation of the report and its recommendations and continued throughout its development. The Action Plan breaks down its projects and proposals into facilitating the development of seven different priority areas: healthy environment; parks and open spaces; community capacity; mobility and transportation; economic opportunity and jobs; affordable housing; and public safety. Within each priority area chapter, there are detailed near-term accomplishments, actions, or projects, and opportunities that, if implemented, will go towards achieving the area-specific goals laid out at the beginning of each chapter. Included among these plans are projects that enhance the natural resilience of these communities, such as tree planting, the development of rain gardens, building more open spaces, and more. 

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Los Angeles Clean Up Green Up Ordinance

April, 2016

In April 2016, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed a groundbreaking ordinance to address environmental justice concerns within three distinct neighborhoods: Boyle Heights, Pacoima-Sun Valley, and Wilmington. For decades, these three communities – comprised primarily of low-income, Latinx individuals and families – suffered a wide range of health effects, due mostly to the high concentration of polluting industrial sites within their neighborhoods. To address these inequalities, LA City Council passed and implemented the Clean Up Green Up Ordinance with a three-pronged goal in mind: (1) to reduce pollution in the most toxic, hotspot areas; (2) to prevent additional pollution; and (3) to revitalize these neighborhoods through supporting local businesses and economic development.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Summer Sprout Program - Cleveland, Ohio

The Summer Sprout Program in Cleveland, Ohio is a partnership between the City and Ohio State University that helps communities establish and maintain thriving neighborhood garden spaces and provides educational opportunities to develop community gardening experts.   The program was first initiated in 1976 and grew in 1977 to include a partnership with Ohio State University Extension, Cuyahoga County (OSUECC) to include educational components. The City of Cleveland Land Bank makes vacant city-owned lots available for community gardening uses and the program provides seeds, soil testing, tilling services, and other materials and services to help establish gardens and keep them running.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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California Coastal Commission Environmental Justice Policy

March 8, 2019

Established in 1972, the California Coastal Commission has a mandate “to protect and enhance California’s coast and ocean for current and future generations" by regulating development with local government. In 2016, AB 2616 was enacted to amend the state’s Coastal Act, giving the Commission authority to specifically consider environmental justice when making coastal permit decisions. While providing the public and the Commission with guidance on how the agency will implement its authority under AB 2616 - the 2019 environmental justice policy is intended to integrate the principles of environmental justice, equality, and social equity into all aspects of the Commission’s program and operations.

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Climate Adaptation Investment and the Community Reinvestment Act

June 2019

This report was conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and Harvard University to explore the connection between climate adaptation and resilience and the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), which encourages banks to invest in and address the credit needs of low- and moderate-income areas and underserved rural areas. The CRA was enacted in 1977 and, according to the Federal Reserve, “requires the Federal Reserve and other federal banking regulators to encourage financial institutions to help meet the credit needs of the communities in which they do business, including low- and moderate-income (LMI) neighborhoods.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Jesse Keenan, Elizabeth Mattiuzzi

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Prince George's County, Maryland Environmental Justice Commission

April 2019

In 2018, the Maryland General Assembly enacted the Maryland House Bill 183 (HB183) establishing the Environmental Justice Commission to address the environmental and public health concerns in Prince George's County. HB 183 lists the composition of the Commission, outlines the missions and duties of the Commission, mandates a findings and recommendations report along with a plan of action within two years and a month. Enacting the commission to facilitate environmental justice in Prince George's County can help improve inequities of low-income and minority residents in the area impacted by climate change. After the Commission had submitted the first final report in February 2019, the General Assembly further acknowledged the Commission’s work and passed HB 1362 in April 2019 to extend the termination date of the Commission to June 30th, 2020. The final report was submitted on January 10th, 2020.

 

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Wells-Goodfellow Neighborhood Green Space Project - St. Louis, Missouri

August 2017

The Green City Coalition (Coalition) -- a partnership between the Metropolitan Sewer District, the City of St. Louis, Missouri Department of Conservation, and the St. Louis Development Corporation -- is leading the conversion of approximately 9 acres of vacant land into greenspace for stormwater management and recreation purposes. The Wells Goodfellow neighborhood in St. Louis has the highest proportion of vacant land in the city, and also struggles with combined sewer overflows, basement backups, and street flooding that affect the Bissell Point Watershed broadly.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Neighborhood Gardens Trust - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The Neighborhood Gardens Trust has been operating as an entity that protects community gardens in the City of Philadelphia since 1986. Working with community gardeners, local leaders, and neighborhood organizations, NGT is a land trust that helps these individuals or groups secure ownership or long-term lease contracts for these gardens to prevent redevelopment or reuse of the land. The organization focuses the majority of its land acquisition and assistance services in lower-income areas throughout Philadelphia, with a specific emphasis on serving underrepresented communities. Since its founding, NGT has protected 48 community gardens throughout Philadelphia, and is on track to protect at least 70 by 2022. 

 

Resource Category: Organizations

 

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Community School Parks Program - Los Angeles, California

2012

The Community School Parks program is a partnership service agreement and shared use policy that enables community members in under-resourced neighborhoods to access school parks and playgrounds during off-school hours when they would normally be closed to the public. People for Parks, now a program of the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust (LANLT), opened the first Community School Parks in 2012 and has expanded the program since with the partnership with LANLT and the development of the shared use policy with the LA Unified School District that enables expanded access to school parks. These Community School Parks (CSPs) provide opportunities for youth, families, and neighbors within the community to connect, recreate, and enjoy green and open space in a safe environment. The program targets dense neighborhoods, typically low-income and communities of color, that are park-scarce and would not otherwise have access to open space within walking distance. In addition to Community School Parks, LANLT works to create new green space in communities of color, engaging community members from concept development through to implementation and park stewardship. 

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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