Climate Mitigation and Adaptation News
July 1, 2019
A biweekly newsletter of the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative
Join the  Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative  for our upcoming quarterly meeting, taking place on  July 16th from 12:30 PM - 4:00 PM  at the California Endowment Center  in Downtown Sacramento.

This workshop will feature presentations on our region's flood risk, the climate/flood nexus, and a panel discussion on equitable flood infrastructure and investments to help participants better understand the region's flood risk and learn about solutions to build resilience.

We strongly encourage public agency staff, elected officials, nonprofits, community-based organizations, consulting firms, advocacy groups, students, and public members interested in learning about our region's vulnerability to flooding to attend this engaging and informative event! Register today!

On August 21st from 1 - 2 PM , the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative will partner with one of our members, the Institute for Local Government (ILG), to host an interactive webinar on effective public participation. This webinar will provide an opportunity for local agencies, nonprofits, and climate professionals to learn about authentic community engagement - specifically how to build community capacity, form lasting partnerships, cultivate community buy-in, and strengthen institutional trust in order to build and develop climate action. ILG will also share best practices that organizations need to know in order to build a strong foundation to foster effective, inclusive, and sustainable community engagement. Join us and register today !
After Paradise, living with fire means redefining resilience
The two-centuries-old American ethos to build, build, build, no matter the costs or the wisdom, is baked into the federal disaster response system. But wildfire and recovery experts warn that this immediate impulse to re-create what was there before the disaster is misguided, expensive and dangerous. There need to be more areas where building is limited, they argue, especially with the extraordinary buildup of forest fuels after a century of suppressing wildfire and a warming climate. Post-Paradise, communities are "hardening" their towns against wildfire like never before. ( NPR)
Rethinking disaster recovery after a California town is leveled by wildfire
As disasters like wildfires, floods and hurricanes are increasing in size, severity and frequency, experts who study our response to them are warning that events like the Camp Fire should be a wake-up call. One of the early lessons from Paradise is that we need to radically overhaul how to prepare for and respond to disasters in the era of climate change, they say. ( NPR) Photo: Meredith Rizzo/NPR
How climate change is shaking up plans for this year's high school graduates
The high school class of 2019 is staring down a future full of climate challenges. The class, most born in 2001 and 2002, hasn’t experienced a year without record-breaking temperatures. Having grown up in a warming climate, these teens worry about what their futures will look like, and they’re searching for solutions that will give them the chance to live happy and healthy lives. “We all have this weight on our shoulders. We have to think about what are we going to do, because before we turn 30, there is a really high risk that our environment is just going to be exhausted,” said April Springer, a junior from Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Meanwhile, many high schools across the US, including in California, have censored students from mentioning climate change in their graduation speeches. ( YCC)
California’s largest utility resorts to blackouts to prevent wildfires
Several fires erupted in Northern California over the weekend, marking the beginning of the 2019 fire season. The largest blaze burned at least 2,200 acres in Yolo County, destroying multiple non-residential structures and forcing more than 300 residences to evacuate. High fire risk conditions stretched from the North Bay region to the Sierra foothills, and PG&E cut power to thousands of residents to prevent power lines from sparking even more blazes. The blackouts came less than two weeks after the CPUC approved of new wildfire mitigation plans for power companies, which expanded preventative power shutdowns. Though PG&E's Public Safety Power Shutdowns were intended to be a last resort when fire risk is high, the company has already had to use the option twice as high temperatures, low humidity, and strong winds hit the Northern region of the state. ( Pacific Standard)
Smoke from US wildfires boosting health risk for millions
Climate change in the Western U.S. means more intense and frequent wildfires churning out waves of smoke that scientists say will sweep across the continent to affect tens of millions of people and cause a spike in premature deaths. That emerging reality is prompting people in cities and rural areas alike to prepare for another summer of sooty skies along the West Coast and in the Rocky Mountains. Microscopic particles in the smoke can trigger heart attacks, breathing problems and other maladies. Death can occur within days or weeks among the most vulnerable following heavy smoke exposure, said Linda Smith, chief of the California Air Resources Board’s health branch. Over the past decade as many as 2,500 people annually died prematurely in the U.S. from short-term wildfire smoke exposure, according to the EPA. The long-term effects have only recently come into focus, with estimates that chronic smoke exposure causes about 20,000 premature deaths per year. ( AP) Photo: AP
Seattle to open smoke shelters for ‘new normal’ summer fires
Ahead of a Western wildfire season expected to be again worse than average, Seattle announced that five city buildings would be outfitted to serve as havens where residents can go to breathe clean air. Seattle officials demonstrated the technology at one of the havens — a community center in the Rainier Beach neighborhood — pointing out air sensors mounted on the wall and describing how the building's existing ventilation system had been retrofitted with special filters to keep it positively pressurized with clean air. Some of the facilities could potentially be scaled up to shelter the city's homeless population if air quality sinks far enough during the summer to endanger those unable to retreat indoors. ( AP)
Planet is entering ‘new climate regime’ with ‘extraordinary’ heat waves intensified by global warming
Simultaneous heat waves scorched land areas all over the Northern Hemisphere last summer, killing hundreds and hospitalizing thousands while intensifying destructive and deadly wildfires. A new study in the journal Earth’s Future concludes that this heat wave epidemic “would not have occurred without human-induced climate change.” The alarming part? There are signs record-setting heat waves are beginning anew this summer — signaling, perhaps, that these exceptional and widespread heat spells are now the norm. In the past few days, blistering, abnormal heat has afflicted several parts of the Northern Hemisphere, including major population centers. The temperature in San Francisco shot up to 100 degrees (37.8 Celsius) Monday, its highest temperatures ever recorded in the months of June, July or August, or this early in the calendar year. ( Washington Post) Photo: Jaipal Singh/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock
Meeting Paris Agreement goals can reduce substantial heat-related mortality in U.S. cities
Focusing on 15 U.S. cities where reliable climate and health data are available, we show that ratcheting up mitigation ambition to achieve the 2°C threshold could avoid between 70 and 1980 annual heat-related deaths per city during extreme events (30-year return period). Achieving the 1.5°C threshold could avoid between 110 and 2720 annual heat-related deaths. Population changes and adaptation investments would alter these numbers. Our results provide compelling evidence for the heat-related health benefits of limiting global warming to 1.5°C in the United States. ( Science Advances)
Get ready for more back-to-back heat waves, study says
New research says that back-to-back heat waves will become more common thanks to climate change. This has important policy implications for vulnerable populations and health and public response systems. A person is more likely to become dehydrated after prolonged bouts of heat. Multiple stretches of high temperatures can quickly sap a community of its resources. “Surveys of low income housing in places such as Harlem have found that after a heat wave has ended, temperatures indoors can remain elevated for a number of days,” said study co-author Jane Baldwin. As the amount of time between each heat wave shrinks, officials will need to scramble to simultaneously address the damage done by previous heat events while preparing for the next spate of extreme temperatures. “We want to know how the effects of compound heat waves will differ from — and amplify — the already severe consequences for human health, infrastructure stability and crop yield that we see from single-event heat waves,” co-author Michael Oppenheimer said. ( Grist)
Extreme heat hits Tucson’s poor neighborhoods hardest
Over the past decade, Tucson has tried to prepare for a hotter future by promoting green infrastructure and water conservation. The city created financial incentives, such as rebates and grants, to encourage citizens to make improvements in their own neighborhoods or backyards, capturing water or adding vegetation. Unfortunately, the way the incentives are structured often makes them inaccessible to the city’s low-income residents. ( High Country News)
New solar standard for non-residential and multifamily buildings in Davis
The City of Davis announced that it will require solar photovoltaics on all new non-residential buildings and any proposed high-rise, multi-family dwellings. The new “Green Reach Code” builds upon an ordinance passed in 2014 requiring solar for all new single-family residential construction in the city limits. The amended code also includes pre-wiring for Level 2 electric vehicle charging at single-family residential developments and charging stations for all new non-residential settings including retail, hospitals and clinics, schools, churches, hotels and entertainment halls and venues, as well as new multi-family developments. The new rules are in alignment with the Davis Climate Action and Adaptation Plan goal of carbon neutrality by 2040, a date moved forward 10 years by the Climate Emergency Resolution passed recently by Council. ( Davis Enterprise)
Tools & Resources
Wildfire Commission Executive Summary Discussion Draft
The Governor's Office of Planning and Research's (OPR) Wildfire Commission on Catastrophic Wildfire Cost and Recovery has released an Executive Summary Discussion Draft to the public. The Commission on Catastrophic Wildfire Cost and Recovery was created in 2018 to provide recommendations to the governor and legislature on how to manage the long-term costs and liabilities associated with utility-caused wildfires. The Executive Summary provides an overview of the work of the commission to date, including key findings and recommendations. ( OPR)
Ready to Respond: Disaster Staffing Toolkit
This guide is to help affordable multifamily housing organizations develop comprehensive disaster staffing plans to protect buildings, engage residents, and continue business operations in the event of a disaster. The toolkit is based on the Incident Command System, a planning framework used by federal, state and local first responders to help with command, control and coordination of disaster response. ( Link)
Upcoming Opportunities
Help shape California’s water future
State agencies are asking Californians to help shape a roadmap for meeting future water needs and ensuring environmental and economic resilience through the 21st century. The effort seeks to broaden California’s approach on water in the face of a range of existing challenges. Input from the public will help the Natural Resources Agency, California Environmental Protection Agency, and Department of Food and Agriculture craft recommendations to Governor Gavin Newsom to fulfill his April 29 executive order calling for a suite of actions to build a climate-resilient water system and ensure healthy waterways. The input will help determine priorities and identify complementary actions to ensure safe and dependable water supplies, flood protection and healthy waterways for the state’s communities, economy and environment. ( WaterResilience)
Receive CivicSpark support for your climate and resilience projects
CivicSpark is a Governor’s Initiative AmeriCorps program dedicated to building capacity for local agencies to address community resilience to environmental and socioeconomic challenges such as climate change, water resource management, affordable housing, and mobility. CivicSpark Fellows are AmeriCorp Members that serve at public agencies for 11 months, supporting resiliency-focused research, planning, and implementation projects such as climate action planning, climate risk assessments, waste reduction, stormwater resource planning, housing equity programs, shared mobility, and more. Applications will be accepted in waves. ( CivicSpark)
Launch your social purpose career with CivicSpark!
CivicSpark, a Governor’s Initiative AmeriCorps program, is currently recruiting 90 Fellows who are interested in serving with local governments in California to address a broad range of resiliency issues. Fellows implement local projects on topics including sustainable transportation, energy efficiency, climate action planning, water conservation, drought response, affordable housing, and rural-broadband. Fellows gain exceptional career experience and training to become future leaders in California’s response to emerging environmental and social equity challenges. CivicSpark is looking for upcoming/recent college graduates who want to gain real-world experience, launch a social purpose career, and make a lasting impact! ( Link)
NextGen 2019 Grant Call for Proposals
The Ray C. Anderson Foundation NextGen Committee is seeking proposals for new or existing programs that will help to reduce global warming, whether through direct carbon avoidance, climate communication, climate education, industry engagement, or otherwise. The Foundation intends to award one $100,000 grant. Proposal must be submitted by a 501(c)(3) non-profit, and have overall goals such as the reduction of CO2e emissions, climate communication and education, and/or corporate engagement to advance climate goals. Deadline: July 12. ( Next Gen)
SMUD’s Shine Award: Projects to improve and revitalize neighborhoods
Do you have an idea for a project that will improve and revitalize our local neighborhoods? We’re inviting you to submit your project for consideration. Our Shine awards range from $5,000 to $100,000 and the selection process is highly competitive. While SMUD will consider a broad variety of potential projects, it is primarily interested in proposals within the following areas: neighborhood revitalization or clean up; STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math); environmental, energy efficiency, energy conservation or greenhouse gas reduction; and general beautification. Any nonprofit organization 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(6) within SMUD service territory is eligible to apply. Deadline: July 15. ( SMUD)
Request for Proposals: Partnership for Resilient Communities
The Institute for Sustainable Communities’ Partnership for Resilient Communities (PRC) planning grant supports community-based organizations to lead climate resilience-building initiatives that elevate the voices, priorities, and assets of the communities they represent. PRC partner organizations are led by people of color and serve historic, urban communities of color throughout the US. Partner organizations receive strategic, technical, and financial assistance; participate in peer-learning workshops; and engage in networking opportunities that connect them with the broader urban climate resilience field. An informational webinar will be held on July 2, 10am PDT. Deadline: July 19, 5pm PDT. ( ISC)
Partners for Places Grant Opportunity
The Funders' Network (TFN), in partnership with the Urban Sustainability Directors Network, has announced the opening of Round 15 of the Partners for Places grant program. A successful matching grant program, Partners for Places creates opportunities for cities and counties to improve communities by building partnerships between local government sustainability offices and place-based foundations. The grant program will provide partnership investments between $25,000 and $75,000 for one year projects, or $50,000 and $100,000 for two year projects, with a 1:1 match required by one or more local foundations. Deadline: July 30. ( TFN)
Department of Conservation: Grants for land trusts and local and regional planning
The Department of Conservation (DOC) has released for public comment the draft Proposition 68 Working Lands and Riparian Corridors Program Guidelines and the first two solicitations. The land trust capacity and project development grant solicitation will build land trust and other agricultural non-profit capacity for agricultural land conservation activities. The local and regional planning grants will support the integration of natural and working lands, specifically agricultural lands, into local and regional planning documents. Grant applications are due July 31. ( DOC)
Groundwork USA Announces Call for Letters of Interest
The Groundwork Program of the National Park Service (NPS) builds community capacity to improve the environmental, economic and social conditions in communities impacted by brownfields and derelict lands. Groundwork USA, in partnership with the NPS and US EPA, is now accepting Letters of Interest from communities wishing to begin the process of applying for Groundwork USA funding and technical assistance and to join the Groundwork Network. For details on the application process, including eligibility requirements, submission details, and evaluation criteria, download the Call for Letters of Interest. Deadline: July 31. ( Link)
California Statewide Park Program
The Statewide Park Program competitive grants will create new parks and recreation opportunities in critically underserved communities across California. The current round of funding offers $254,942,000. Types of target projects include creating a new park, or expanding or renovating an existing park. Eligible entities include cities, counties, districts, join powers authorities, and 501(c)3 nonprofits. Postmarked or hand-deliver applications by August 5th. ( SPP)
Multifamily Housing Program (MHP) – Notice of Funding Availability
The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) has $178 million in funds for the Multifamily Housing Program (MHP) to assist the new construction, rehabilitation and preservation of permanent and transitional rental housing for lower income households. Deadline: August 20. ( HCD)
Sustainable Agricultural Lands Conservation Program Easement and Planning Grants
The Sustainable Agricultural Lands Conservation Program makes strategic investments to protect agricultural lands from conversion to more GHG-intensive uses. Easement grants have no maximum limit and aim to protect important agricultural lands under threat of conversion through the acquisition of voluntary, permanent agricultural conservation easements. Planning grants provide up to $250,000 to local and regional governments to work closely with local stakeholders to develop local and regional land use policies and implementation activities that integrate agricultural land conservation in a way that reduces or avoids GHG emissions, supports job creation, and benefits AB 1550 populations. Final deadline: Friday, September 13. ( SGC)
USDA Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Sustainable Agricultural Systems Grant
Applications must focus on approaches that promote transformational changes in the U.S. food and agriculture system within the next 25 years. The program seeks creative and visionary applications that take a systems approach, and that will significantly improve the supply of abundant, affordable, safe, nutritious, and accessible food, while providing sustainable opportunities for expansion of the bioeconomy. These approaches must demonstrate current and future social, behavioral, economic, health, and environmental impacts. Deadline: Sept. 26. ( USDA)
SB 2: $123 million available for Housing Planning Grants
The Department of Housing and Community Development has $123 million available under the SB2 Planning Grants Program (PGP). The PGP will help local governments prepare, adopt, and implement plans that accelerate housing production; streamline the approval of housing development affordable to owner and renter households at all income levels; facilitate housing affordability, particularly for lower- and moderate-income households; and promote development consistent with the State Planning Priorities. This a is a non-competitive, over-the-counter grant program that can fund a range of projects including targeted general plan updates, community plans and specific plans, zoning updates and by-right zoning for housing, streamlined environmental analyses, and process updates to streamline zoning. Applications will be accepted until November 30, 2019. ( HCD)
Ford Foundation: Challenge Inequality Grant Program
The Ford Foundation is currently accepting brief pitches for ideas and projects that challenge inequality in their seven program areas - one of which is Natural Resources and Climate Change. Past projects have included communications assistance to promote community land and forestry rights as effective climate change solutions, and promoting learning exchanges on forestry and climate change. Project ideas can be submitted on a rolling basis. ( Ford Foundation
Funding: Acorn Foundation’s general support grants for environmental justice groups
The Acorn Foundation is dedicated to supporting community-based organizations working to advance environmental conservation, sustainability and environmental justice. The Foundation is particularly interested in small, innovative community-based projects that engage in community organizing to advocate for environmental health and justice; preserve and restore habitats supporting biological diversity; and prevent or remedy toxic pollution. The Foundation has an open Letter of Inquiry process for general support grants to grassroots organizations. ( Link)
Upcoming Events
Stakeholder Input: Health, Wildfires and Climate Change
Wednesday, July 10, 1.30-3pm
This webinar will solicit input from stakeholders on how to protect the health of Californians from wildfires. We will discuss ways to address the needs of people living or working where fires occur or in high-risk potential fire areas; first responders, clean-up laborers and other fire-related workers; and people living outside immediate fire areas that are affected by smoke. The webinar will build on a workshop held on April 30th at UC Berkeley, and will review the draft recommendations from that workshop and suggest additions, revisions, and clarifications. The webinar will be led by the Climate Readiness Institute at UC Berkeley. ( Register)
Spruce Up! Using Green Roofs and Green Spaces to Beat the Heat
Thursday, July 11, 11am-12.30pm PDT
Join this webinar to learn how green roofs and other green spaces are being used to address urban heat across the country. The webinar will highlight the variety of benefits, such as how green roofs improve air quality and public health in Kansas City. The event will also feature a national green roof expert and delve into Denver's recent green building ordinance. ( Register)
California Natural Resources Agency Speaker Series: Reactivating our Floodplains
Monday, July 15, 12.30-1.30pm
California Natural Resources Building, 1 st floor auditorium, 1416 Ninth St, Sacramento
Please join California Natural Resources Agency Secretary Wade Crowfoot and a diverse panel of experts in a public conversation about efforts to reactivate the floodplains of the Sacramento Valley. Presentations will provide an interesting mix of fish and wildlife science, water management policy, and video highlighting multi-benefit projects that connect water and land, provide flood protection, and create habitat. ( Link)
CRC Workshop: Managing our Region’s Flood Risk
Tuesday, July 16, 12.30-4pm
Join the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative, leading climate practitioners, state agencies, local jurisdictions, and community leaders for CRC’s upcoming quarterly meeting featuring presentations on the Capital Region’s flood risk, the climate/flood nexus and a panel discussion on equitable flood infrastructure and investments. ( Register)
Webinar: American attitudes on a Green New Deal
Wednesday, July 17, 12-1pm
Although the Green New Deal (GND) has been portrayed as an extreme solution, recent polling indicates that most Americans support many aspects of it. ecoAmerica has done research with a national polling firm to analyze American attitudes, so that policy makers can better understand what solutions the public wants to see. Join Local Government Commission and ecoAmerica to hear more about where the debate on the GND — and American support for clean energy and green job creation — may be leading us, and how local communities are responding. ( Register)
ARCCA Webinar: Wildfire Resilience in California: State of the Space
Thursday, July 18, 1pm
This webinar will provide an overview of current State efforts aiming to build wildfire resilience, featuring Jennifer Montgomery, chair of the Governor's Forest Management Task Force, and Nuin-Tara Key, Climate Resilience Program Director at the Governor's Office of Planning and Research. Participants will learn about the history and structure of the Forest Management Task Force, the 45-Day Report on Community Wildfire Prevention and Mitigation, wildfire-related initiatives of the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resilience Program Technical Advisory Council, upcoming funding opportunities, and more. ( Register)
Best Practices for Effective Climate & Health Communication
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is continuing to host a webinar series on climate and health communications. Upcoming webinars will focus on how to use visual and content cues to convey key messages quickly in a cluttered media environment, identify new ways to frame key messages to increase the relevance to audiences outside public health circles, and how to use data points to tell a more powerful story. Communicating Data for Maximum Impact: July 18. 
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.
CRC is a program of the  Local Government Commission .