Climate Mitigation and Adaptation News
April 19, 2017
A biweekly newsletter of the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative

April showers doesn't often hold true for California, but this year's wet winter has lasted well into the springtime, sending a stark reminder of the critical need to incorporate climate predictions and impacts into disaster planning efforts. Join us at our upcoming quarterly meeting on Tuesday, April 25, to discuss opportunities to better incorporate resilience and adaptation planning into disaster planning and preparedness efforts. Registration closes Friday - we look forward to seeing you! 
Serious design flaws and construction and maintenance defects doomed Oroville Dam
Photo: Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times
Design flaws, construction shortcomings, and maintenance errors caused the Oroville Dam spillways to fail, according to a report from UC Berkeley's Center for Catastrophic Risk Management. Designers did not call for a thick enough concrete spillway floor, nor did they require continuous steel reinforcement or strong enough anchors to secure it to the mountainside. Second, the state failed to do adequate maintenance, such as neglecting to repair cracks that allowed water to seep in and weaken the spillway. The report also calls into question the safety of similar dams built within the same time period as Oroville. ( LA Times)
Cap-and-trade funding helps Sacramento deploy zero-emissions school buses
The Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District will deploy 29 electric school buses and charging infrastructure throughout Sacramento County, including in the Twin Rivers, Elk Grove and Sacramento City Unified School Districts. Funded in part by cap and trade funding, the project will provide the largest-ever U.S. deployment of zero-emission school buses, including the first 100% battery-powered school bus, to reduce GHG emissions, eliminate air pollutants, provide sustainable transportation, and deliver health co-benefits to children and the greater community. School buses are the largest segment of mass transit in the US, and diesel school bus fleets disproportionately expose children to toxic air contaminants and associated health risks. ( Link)
Sea level rise could be potentially catastrophic in California
A new state document updates the science on how much sea levels will rise in California, with potentially catastrophic consequences for some locations. The Bay Area will see sea levels rise by as much as 3.4 feet by 2100 if significant action isn't taken, while a worst-case scenario of 10 ft. would swamp countless homes, roads, harbors and even airports along the coast. The Sea-Level Rise Guidance Document, which aims to help state and local officials prepare for climate change, lays out expected ocean levels through 2150 for scenarios. The new analysis is based on updated information on ice melt at the earth's poles. ( SF Chronicle)
Severe turbulence could become 2-3 times more frequent on trans-Atlantic flights
Photo: Getty
Rising temperatures are projected to increase the severity and frequency of clear air turbulence for flights across the North Atlantic, the world's busiest transoceanic air route with over 600 aircraft crossings each day. Changes in the jet stream, which are also associated with longer and more intense droughts and other extreme weather phenomenon, are the main cause in turbulence for flights over the Atlantic. Doubling carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere could increase the average amount of severe clear air turbulence at 39,000 ft by 149 percent, with light and moderate turbulence also increasing by 59 to 94 percent. ( Independent)
Extreme heat threat rises for megacities
Even if we successfully limit the global average temperature increase to 1.5°C, the number of megacities facing extreme heat would still double from today, with over 350 million people exposed to potentially lethal heat stroke and heat exhaustion by 2050. The problem is not just an increase in average heat: averages conceal extremes, and the number of extreme heat episodes is expected to climb dramatically even with a modest-sounding increase in a global average. And with heat comes the extra hazard of humidity. With each 1°C rise in temperatures, the atmosphere's capacity for moisture rises by 7%, which reduces how easily people can cool off. At 4°C, some parts of the world could become intolerably hot, and could result in migration from the Middle East and North Africa. ( Link)
Photo: Zouzou Wizman via Flickr
Two more US cities hire chief resilience officers
Photo: AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy
Honolulu's new chief resilience officer (CRO) will focus on everything from coastal flooding to water shortages, and in Louisville, Kentucky, the new CRO will focus on the built environment and economic challenges. The positions are funded through the Rockefeller Foundation's 100 Resilient Cities initiative, which both cities joined last May. The new CROs will be able to tap into the Resilient Cities' network of other CROs, including in Oakland, Boston, and Chicago. CROs are tasked with creating and implementing a citywide resilience strategy to prepare for and recover from both climate-driven disasters like hurricanes, fires and floods, as well as slow-moving disasters such as homelessness and unemployment. ( Next City)
Women's crucial role in combating climate change
Photo: STR_Agence France-Presse /Getty Images
Women are more vulnerable to the effects of climate change: they are less likely to be educated as scientists or represented on decision-making committees, and more likely to collect water, food and firewood - and therefore feel the brunt of extreme weather, disappearing water resources, and soil degradation more keenly. But women are also playing a key role to fight climate change. The C40 Cities network, which has its first woman chair in Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, just launched its Women4Climate initiative, part of a new effort to boost women's leadership on climate at the local level through mentorship and knowledge-sharing. Women leaders were also crucial to the inclusive process of negotiating the Paris Agreement, and are now working throughout their communities to build resilience. ( NY Times & PS Mag)
Stunning time-lapse photos illustrate glaciers' rapid disappearance around the world
The Geological Society of America has published a dramatic series of time-lapse photos that show the stunning rate at which glaciers are vanishing from our world. Taken by James Balog, the photos have an immediacy that's missing from satellite images or scientific charts. And the photos have an added visceral effect because they come from places where human communities exist - it's not just ice on Antarctica but also glaciers from Europe, the Americas, Asia, and Africa. And once they're gone, they may never exist again. ( Washington Post)

Photo: James Balog and the Extreme Ice Survey/GSA Today/Geological Society of America
Tools and Reports
Investing in Our Future: Taking Action for a Healthier Community 
Our region will be vulnerable to the health impacts of climate change, including extreme heat, air pollution, and decreased water quality. This new factsheet from the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative highlights this critical issue from a local perspective, with examples of regional solutions to help us prepare for climate impacts, realize long-term health benefits and grow more equitable, resilient and vibrant neighborhoods. We encourage you to review and distribute this resource widely throughout the region. ( Link)
ARRCA: Tracking Active Climate-Change Related Legislation
ARCCA is tracking a list of active climate change-related bills as a resource to ARCCA members and adaptation professionals. This list will be updated twice a week, typically on Mondays and Thursdays. Please note that descriptions are pulled directly from the bill text without any analysis, and that some descriptions only include a portion of the summary. ( Link)
Upcoming Opportunities
CivicSpark now recruiting project partners for 2017-2018 program year
Over the past two years, the Local Government Commission's Governor's Initiative AmeriCorps CivicSpark program has provided 130,000+ hours of support to over 100 public agencies, while implementing 80 projects in climate change and water policy. In Sacramento, CivicSpark fellows have been working to increase food waste recycling and reduce its associated GHG emissions and support low-income home weatherization, among other activities. ( Link)
Apply for a public fleet rebate
California public fleets in disadvantaged communities can apply for 2017 rebate funding for new, eligible zero-emission and plug-in hybrid light-duty vehicles. The Public Fleet Pilot Project has $3 million available, with rebates up to $15,000 per vehicle. Fleets may reserve rebate funding at any stage in the procurement process up to six months in advance of expected delivery to six months after delivery. Check your ZIP code to determine eligibility; ineligible fleets can still receive standard Clean Vehicle Rebate Project rebates of up to $2,500 per vehicle. ( Link)
USDA Regional Conservation Partnership Program
The USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service seeks to co-invest with partners in innovative, workable, and cost-effective approaches to benefit farming, ranching, and forest operations, local economies, and the communities and resources in a watershed or other geographic area. Deadline: April 21. ( Link)
USDA: Wetland Reserve Enhancement Partnership (WREP)
The USDA is offering up to $15 million in technical and financial assistance to help protect, restore, and enhance critical wetlands on agricultural lands. Through WREP, states, local governments, non-profits, and tribes will work with landowners to enroll eligible land into easements and adopt a variety of conservation measures. Deadline: April 24. ( USDA
California Natural Resources Agency: Urban Greening Grant
The Urban Greening Program has $76 million to fund projects that reduce GHG emissions by sequestering carbon, decreasing energy consumption, and reducing vehicle miles traveled, while also transforming the built environment into places that are more sustainable, enjoyable, and effective in creating healthy and vibrant communities. Deadline: May 1, 5pm. ( Link)
PG&E: Better Together Resilient Communities Grant Program
PG&E is launching a new grant program that will award $1 million over five years to support local climate resilience initiatives. For the first year, PG&E will award two grants of $100,000 each for projects that will build healthy and resilient forests and watersheds to help communities plan and prepare for increasing wildfire risk. Applicants must include a local government within PG&E's Northern and Central California service area as a partner. Deadline: May 12. ( PG&E)
Environmental Enhancement and Mitigation Program 2016-2017 Grant Cycle
This program will award funding for projects that mitigate the environmental effects of transportation facilities (such as roads, stations, ports, airports, and transit). Eligible project types include urban forestry projects designed to offset vehicle greenhouse gas emissions. A grant workshop will be held in Sacramento on May 11. Deadline: 5pm, June 21. ( CNRA)
SACOG: Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Innovations Grant
Do you have a solution to encourage people in the Sacramento region to get out of their cars? The TDM Innovations Grant Program will fund new projects and activities that reduce single-occupant vehicle travel and produce measureable results. Examples of eligible projects include parking pricing programs, technology-based solutions, marketing projects and more. SACOG strongly encourages applicants to submit a single-page concept paper during the pre-application period to get feedback before the final application round in May. Concept paper deadline: April 17, 5pm. Final deadline: June 30, 5pm. ( Link)
Upcoming Events
Webinar: Financing Microgrids - Opportunities for public-private partnerships
Tuesday, April 25, 9-10.15am PDT
Microgrids offer opportunities for local communities to invest in energy-efficient and low-carbon sources of electricity while improving their resilience to extreme weather and security risks. Microgrids provide a tiny fraction of U.S. electricity today, often for universities, hospitals, and military bases, but capacity is expected to more than double in the next three years. This webinar features microgrid experts who will review practical solutions to accelerating deployment, including the use of public-private partnerships. Read the related brief, " Microgrid Momentum: Building Efficient, Resilient Power." ( Register)
Webinar: 100 Days of the New Administration
Wednesday, April 26, 10-11am
Join a panel discussion to explore the implications of and actions in response to the first 100 days of the new federal administration on adaptation activities in the US. ( Register)
Webinar: Exploring Community-wide health interventions that have impact in 5 years - public transportation
Wednesday, April 26, 10-11am PST
Join the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to discuss expanding public transportation, one of the CDC's Health Impact in Five Years (HI-5) initiative interventions, which are non-clinical, community-wide approaches with a proven track record. This webinar highlights specific interventions and will provide stakeholders with the opportunity to hear real-world examples of how local and state-level organizations have expanded public transportation to meet needs of their communities. Presenters from the CDC, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority will describe experiences with introducing and expanding public transportation services. ( Register)
Webinar: Sustainability in the City of Palo Alto
Thursday, April 27, 11am-noon PDT
Palo Alto was one of the first cities in the world to reach "carbon neutrality" with its electricity portfolio and has one of the toughest green building codes in America. In 2016, the city council adopted an updated Sustainability and Climate Action Plan that calls for the city to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. Tune in to find out how they plan to do it. ( Register)
Webinar: Climate Changes Health: Community Design and Transportation
Friday, April 28, 10-11am PDT
Learn how climate change strategies can improve community design and transportation practices. Presenters will discuss approaches to support healthy, equitable communities. This is the third webinar supporting the American Public Health Association's Year of Climate Change and Health; you can watch the previous webinars online. ( Register)
People's Climate March
Saturday, April 29, 11am
Capitol East Steps, Sacramento
Following the historic 2014 climate march in New York City and the 2015 global marches during the Paris Climate Summit, organizers of the People's Climate Movement are calling for another mass mobilization to accelerate the course on US climate policy. Join hundreds of communities on April 29th - the 100th day of this administration - as we march for the climate, jobs, and justice. Sister marches across the world are happening alongside the national Washington D.C. event, and the Sacramento Climate Coalition is excited to be leading the local campaign for this important milestone. ( Link)
ARB Research Seminar: Life-Cycle Assessment and Co-Benefits of Cool Pavements
Wednesday, May 3, 2pm
Sierra Hearing Room, Cal/EPA Building, 1001 I Street, Sacramento
"Cool' (high albedo) pavements represent one part of sustainable, cool community programs that - alongside other strategies like urban forestry, solar PV, and cool roofs - help cities, regions, and the state meet GHG emission reduction and sustainable communities goals. While cool pavements can reduce GHG emissions from building energy use, mitigate urban heat islands, and improve air quality in cities, it is also important to consider the environmental consequences of pavement materials and pavement construction, and thus the life-cycle environmental impacts. Speakers are Dr. Ronnen Levinson of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Dr. John Harvey of UC Davis. ( ARB, webcast)
Business of Local Energy Symposium
Friday, May 5, Hyatt Regency Long Beach
Join government, business, and community leaders from across the state to accelerate California's shift to a clean energy economy. Don't miss this opportunity to network, exchange ideas about Community Choice Energy programs, and learn about energy policy, regulations, markets, and technology. Use CRC's discount code BLE17CRC to receive a 10% discount off registration! ( Learn more or register)
Webinar: Biophillic Cities: Integrating Nature into Urban Design and Planning
Tuesday, May 9, 10.15-11.45am PDT
The "greening" of cities can focus on everything except nature, emphasizing such elements as public transit, renewable energy production, and energy efficient building systems. While these are important aspects of reimagining urban living, human beings have an innate need to connect with the natural world (the biophilia hypothesis). And any vision of a sustainable urban future must place its focus squarely on nature, on the presence, conservation, and celebration of the actual green features and natural life forms. This webinar will discuss the principles of biophilia and use Washington, D.C., as an example biophilic city. ( Register)
National Adaptation Forum
May 9-11, 2017, Saint Paul, Minnesota
Those who attend benefit from exposure to all aspects of the field, professional development, and information sharing through an innovative and comprehensive program featuring plenary sessions, symposia, working groups, training sessions, exhibit booths, poster sessions, and networking events.  ( Register)
Save the date: 2018 New Partners for Smart Growth
February 1-3, 2018, San Francisco, CA
Mark your calendars for the 17th annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference in San Francisco, California. Get involved early in the nation's largest smart growth and sustainability event by becoming a sponsor or a promotional partner. Don't forget to check out   presentations and materials from this year's fantastic conference in St. Louis too. ( NPSG
About the Capital Region Climate  Readiness  Collaborative
The Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative is a membership based collaborative network designed to promote greater climate change resilience planning coordination in the six-county Sacramento Region. The purpose of this collaborative network is to create a forum where leaders from government, academia, environmental and community groups, the business community, and labor can come together to exchange information, identify vulnerabilities and data gaps, leverage resources, and advance comprehensive solutions in an effort to create stronger, sustainable, and economically viable communities in the Capital Region.

The CRC is a program of the Local Government Commission.