Special Statement

UConn President Tom Katsouleas recently released a message to the University regarding events in Minneapolis, and efforts to make our University a place for students, faculty, and staff to do the work of building more inclusive, affirming, and equitable institutions, organizations, and communities.
For our part, the CIRCA team has been using this time to “reflect, learn, and take action” to identify how we can most effectively contribute to real and meaningful change in Connecticut. Our state has long struggled with the role that systemic racial and socioeconomic inequality has played in the patterns of development and land use in both our coastal and inland communities. We must recognize and address both past and current policies that have the effect of amplifying the negative consequences of climate change on the housing, education, employment, and healthcare of vulnerable communities. Planning and public investment in climate adaptation programs (e.g., buy-outs, subsidies for elevation, and beach replenishment) must be expanded transparently through dialogue to identify and foster actions that alleviate the burdens on socially vulnerable communities.
While we continue to reflect and learn, we will act to bring environmental justice and equity to the forefront of climate change adaptation planning in Connecticut. We are engaging with the Governor’s Council on Climate Change Equity and Environmental Justice Working Group to learn how to be effective in including community voices in the next phase of our Resilient Connecticut project. In the coming months, we will increase our collaboration with Connecticut stakeholders to guide CIRCA’s efforts.
June 2020
The Resilience Roundup highlights announcements, events, and funding opportunities along with links to the previous month's local, state, and national resilience news. 
Learn more about CIRCA at circa.uconn.edu
and the Resilient Connecticut Project at resilientconnecticut.uconn.edu
Resilient Connecticut - Project Updates

Connecticut Coastal Towns Storm Annual Exceedance Probability & Return Interval

The CIRCA team reproduced the highest 44 storms between 1950-2018 using a coupled circulation and wave model. The modeled events are fit to a probability distribution to statistically estimate the annual exceedance probabilities (AEP) and return periods for expected storms. The results presented here are to highlight the storm surge water levels and significant wave heights, which may contribute to a better understanding of extreme storms and guide decision-makers. Check out the Return Interval Viewer here and the datasets here .
Coastal Vulnerability Index

The CIRCA team has developed a GIS supported index-based approach to analyze multiple scales and criteria interactively and to express an overlapped one-dimensional risk index. This coastal vulnerability index demonstrates the vulnerable regions to coastal flooding using both biophysical and socio-economic data.

Explore our Story Map about the Index and check out our dataset .
EBC Climate Change Leadership Webinar Series: City of Cambridge Port Climate Change & Preparedness Plan
June 12, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm

The Port Climate Change & Preparedness Plan provides a planning framework for resiliency. The Port is at risk of increased flooding and more frequent heat waves. It is representative of Cambridge neighborhoods with a dense residential area and underground infrastructure. The Plan adopted three ideas for change: Enhanced Gray & Green Infrastructure at the neighborhood scale; Super-Resilient Blocks addressing groups of buildings and open spaces; and Resilient People taking an active role in building stronger social connections.

Join us for this EBC webinar to learn how the Port Plan connects high-level planning strategies with specific implementation measures at the forefront of best practices for New England communities.
Rhode Island Heating Sector Transformation Webinar
June 18, 2020, 10:00am - 11:00am

During this webinar, Nicholas Ucci, Acting Commissioner of the Office of Energy Resources will provide an overview of the Heating Sector Transformation program in order to understand Rhode Island’s broad initiative to create “a cleaner, more affordable and reliable heating future.”
Build it With Wood Webinar
July 1, 2020, 12:00pm - 1:00pm

The manufacture of concrete and steel produces large greenhouse gas emissions, and use of these materials in building construction in turn makes the construction industry carbon intensive. But alternatives are emerging. During this webinar we learn about New England Forestry Foundation’s initiative to significantly reduce the carbon footprint of new mid- and high-rise construction by replacing concrete and steel with engineered timber products. Jennifer Shakun, leader of the Build it With Wood program, discusses how substituting engineered wood for more fossil fuel intensive materials can lead to better forest management, promote development patterns that reduce sprawl, help make housing more affordable, and allow buildings themselves to serve as carbon sinks.

This event is part of the Governor’s Council on Climate Change Exploring Climate Solutions Webinar Series.
Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences
First Low-Carbon Conference

AESS announces its First Low-Carbon Conference as the 2020 event goes all-virtual. It will take place July 15-17. It will include recorded presentations with Welcome & Keynote speeches, live Q&A, poster presentations, and a virtual exhibit hall. The CIRCA team will be presenting at this conference as a panel.
Local & State News Clips
The Governor's Council on Climate Change Hosts Digital Meetings Throughout the Month of June
CT DEEP - June 2020

The Governor's Council on Climate Change is currently hosting Working Group meetings online. Information regarding upcoming meeting information, as well as previous meeting notes may be found on the GC3 Working Group website, linked below.
New York Just Took a Huge Step Toward Funding Lasting Climate Resilience
Environmental Defense Fund - May 14, 2020

New York State legislature recently passed the The Restore Mother Nature Bond Act, which will give New York leaders the ability to invest $3 billion of state dollars in large-scale projects that build climate resilience over time, while also benefiting the economy.
2020 Vision for Our Coasts: ASBPA Names Its Best Restored Beaches for 2020
American Shore & Beach Preservation Association - May 18, 2020

The South Benson Marina/Jennings Beach in Fairfield, CT recently received the 2020 Best Restored Beach Award for its dredging and beach nourishment project.
In Protecting Long Island's Coastline, Brookhaven Sets Example
News Day - May 17, 2020

An important step to protect Long Island's coastline from sea level rise took place recently when the town of Brookhaven bought 106 vacant properties in low-lying Mastic Beach to preserve them as flood-buffering wetlands.
National News Clips
Fortress Charleston: Will Walling Off the City Hold Back the Waters?
Yale Environment 360 - May 5, 2020

Officials in Charleston, South Carolina have endorsed a $2 billion plan to wall off the historic downtown from rising seas and surging storms. It is the latest in a growing number of extravagantly expensive seawalls and barriers being proposed to defend U.S. coastal cities.
Latest Estimates on Sea Level Rise by 2100 Are Worse Than We Thought
Science Alert - May 11, 2020

A recently published study discusses sea level rise projections for 2100, as well as 2300. It is hypothesized that oceans are likely to rise as much as 1.3 meters by 2100 if Earth's surface warms another 3.5 degrees Celsius.
Will COVID-19 Jeopardize a Climate in Crisis--or Jump-Start a Green Recovery?
PR Newswire - May 27, 2020

A new study from the Boston Consulting Group explains that by focusing on the climate agenda, even in the midst of this pandemic, leaders can direct investments toward sustainability, rebuild businesses for environmental resilience, and contribute to solving two crises at once.
North Carolina Confronts Climate Change With Forthcoming Resilience Plan
Environmental Defense Fund - May 28, 2020

As North Carolina recovers from a slate of recent hurricanes, state officials are moving quickly to build resilience ahead of future storms. Governor Cooper is expected to release the state’s first resilience plan in early June, providing a framework that will help the state move quickly toward a more resilient future.
The Resilience Roundup highlights CIRCA's  presence in the news, provides links to recent local/state/national news articles related to resilience and adaptation, and announces upcoming events and seminars.
The Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation's (CIRCA) mission is to increase the resilience and sustainability of vulnerable communities along Connecticut's coast and inland waterways to the growing impacts of climate change and extreme weather on the natural, built, and human environment. The institute is located at the University of Connecticut's Avery Point campus and includes faculty from across the university. CIRCA is a partnership between UConn and the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CT DEEP).