Climate Mitigation and Adaptation News
March 22, 2018
A biweekly newsletter of the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative
Thank you to everyone who came to our quarterly adaptation exchange last week. We held a rich discussion on how adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and trauma can harm mental, physical, and social wellbeing long into adulthood. Climate change, in the form of extreme events as well as slow-onset impacts, can traumatize not just individuals but entire communities, as the Tubbs Fire in Sonoma County demonstrated. But we can also build resilience by addressing ACEs and developing trauma-informed approaches to first response, disaster recovery, and community healing. Please see our website for all event materials , including presentations, notes, and related resources. We will also be creating an ACEs resource page on our website - keep checking back for updates!
EPA study ranks most and least resilient counties in the US
Chart: Environmental Protection Agency
Kodiak Island, Alaska, is the most climate-resilient place in the entire nation, according to an EPA study that assesses the climate resilience of all 3,135 counties. The least resilient counties were in the Southeast, Appalachia, and western Texas. The Climate Resilience Screening Index analyzes resilience as a combination of risk, governance, society, built environment, and the natural environment, based on 117 datasets. Metrics included age, education, homelessness, and health; the number of participants in the National Flood Insurance Program; and whether neighbors are inclined to help one another, or to retreat into isolated enclaves. They also measured the urban fabric: the number of vacant structures, communication networks, roads, railways, and airports. Some of the communities on course to suffer most are the ones already struggling due to poverty, inequality, and other challenges. ( Pacific Standard)
FEMA has radically under-estimated how vulnerable Americans are to flooding
Photo: Lt. Zachary West/Army National Guard via Getty Images
The first high-resolution, national-level assessment of flood risk in the US reveals that 2.6 to 3.1 times more people are exposed to serious flood risks than estimated by FEMA. This new assessment combines datasets on weather, water, population, and building density from the US Geological Survey, Army Corps of Engineers, EPA, and elsewhere to create a layered picture of US flood risk that is "significantly higher in quality and spatial coverage" than FEMA maps. The new analysis shows that 40.8 million are exposed to a 100-year flood, compared to FEMA's estimate of 13 million. California has less land at risk but $763 billion in assets at risk. By 2100, more than 16 percent of Americans - 75 million people - and $10 trillion in assets will be in flood plains. And that's not including climate impacts on extreme weather. ( Vox)
A floating house to resist the floods of climate change
Unlike traditional buildings, amphibious structures are not static; they respond to floods like ships to a rising tide, floating on the water's surface. Amphibiation reflects a growing consensus that, at a time of climatic volatility, people can't simply fight against water; they have to learn to live with it. In 2006, a nonprofit called the Buoyant Foundation Project in Louisiana began working with a group of architecture and engineering students to devise a method for retrofitting local homes with amphibious foundations. They developed a simple design that could be installed by two people without heavy equipment for $10 to 40 per square foot - cheaper and more resilient than permanent elevation retrofits. ( New Yorker)
Floods are getting worse, and 2,500 chemical sites lie in the water's path
More than 2,500 sites that handle toxic chemicals are located in flood-prone areas in every state, risking toxic spills like those that occurred in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. A New York Times analysis of federal floodplain and industrial data found about 1,400 toxic chemical sites in areas with the highest flood risk, and an additional 1,100 sites in areas of moderate risk. Other industrial complexes lie just outside FEMA-defined flood-risk zones, obscuring their vulnerability as flood risks increase. Federal law does not explicitly require sites in floodplains that handle toxic chemicals to take extra precautions against flooding. Nor do most states or local governments have such requirements. ( NYTimes )
'Cloud seeding' may make it snow, but will it reduce droughts in the West?
Photo: Chelsea Self/Glenwood Springs Post Independent/AP
Worsening water scarcity, combined with new research, is spurring states, counties, districts and power companies across the thirsty West to use "cloud seeding" to increase snowfall. Colorado's cloud seeding program, which costs $1 million a year, is paid for not just by the state, ski resorts and local water users but also by water districts as far away as Los Angeles that want to increase snowmelt into the Colorado River. Major urban water districts in Arizona, California and Nevada have funded cloud seeding in the Rocky Mountains for more than 10 years and are now close to signing an agreement to split the cost of nine more years. Studies suggest cloud seeding can increase snowfall by 5 to 15 percent each year. ( Link)
California water use back to pre-drought levels as conservation wanes
For the 7th time in the last 8 months, the amount of water saved by urban Californians has declined, according to the State Water Resources Control Board. In other words, lawn sprinklers are back on, showers are getting longer, and overall, California's water use is back to where it was before the drought. Overall, urban residents reduced the amount of water they use by just .8 percent in January - a far cry from the 20.7 percent reduction in January 2017 - compared to the baseline of January 2013. The biggest water use increase was in Southern California, which exceeded 2013 levels of usage, and where rainfall is only a quarter of normal. ( Link)
Climate change could significantly reduce crop yields in California by 2050
Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Climate change could decrease the yield of major crops in California by up to 40 percent by 2050.The study, led by UC Merced and Davis researchers, examined future changes to temperature, snowpack, drought, and flooding. Fruit crops were severely impacted, with yields dropping by 40 percent in some areas under a high-emissions scenario. By 2050, the Central Valley will not be suitable for species like apples, cherries, and pears under any emissions scenarios. ( Link)
Arctic spring is starting 16 days earlier than a decade ago, study shows
Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images
Spring is arriving earlier the further north you go, according to a new UC Davis study. Evaluating temperature records and phenological studies on the timings of bird migrations, flowerings, and other markers of spring, the study found that spring is now arriving 16 days earlier in the Arctic, compared to about 1 day earlier in Los Angeles. The northward increase in the rate of springtime advance is roughly three times greater than previously thought. These findings underline the dramatic pace of climate change in the Arctic, where temperatures are rising twice as fast the global average and which is experiencing the warmest winter on record. ( Guardian)
Citrus Heights launches new ride-sharing service SmaRT Ride
Citrus Heights is piloting a new fast, affordable, and flexible ride-sharing system similar to Uber Pool or Lyft Line. A joint venture of Regional Transit, Citrus Heights, and TransLoc, SmaRT Ride provides door-to-door service on demand. City leaders say it will be on par with Lyft and Uber, but at a much lower cost, ranging from $1.35 to $2.75 per trip. Unlike Lyft, rides can be requested via landlines. If the pilot is successful, phase two will be in Orangevale and Folsom. ( Link)
Tools and Resources
PREPdata: Visualize data to build climate resilience
PREPdata, a new open-source platform, helps adaptation planners analyze vulnerability, prepare for future disasters and build resilience. Users around the world can explore climate, physical and socioeconomic datasets curated from highly credible sources like NASA, ESA and more; map them to visualize a specific region's vulnerability; track indicators on dashboards; and share their stories with adaptation professionals around the world. The platform's wide-ranging datasets include extreme weather, precipitation, drought and flood risks, social vulnerability, coastal energy facilities, global urban heat island effect, dams, global cropland extent and more. ( Link)
CARB: 2018 Annual Report to the Legislature on California Climate Investments
The Department of Finance and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) have released the   2018 Annual Report to the Legislature on California Climate Investments using Cap-and-Trade auction proceeds. The report provides estimates of expected GHG emissions reductions; key statistics on benefits to disadvantaged and low-income communities and households; demand for funding; and leveraged funds. CARB also released an updated interactive map including each implemented project, which can be filtered by program, county, or legislative district. ( Link)
Climate Action Team Public Health Workgroup Meeting: Healthy Soils & Human Health
The State of California's Climate Action Team Public Health Workgroup has posted the recording and presentations from its February 7, 2018 meeting, which explored the intersection of healthy soils, human and community health, sustainable agricultural practices, carbon sequestration, and addressing climate change. ( Link)
Senate Bill 375 Proposed Update to Regional GHG Targets
The California Air Resources Board's Final Environmental Analysis and Response to Comments for the Proposed Update to the SB 375 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Targets are now available.  These documents will be considered along with staff's final  Proposal to Update the SB 375 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Targets at CARB's March 22 Board meeting. ( Link)
California Adapts: A podcast special from America Adapts, the climate change podcast
In this three-part podcast special, experts discuss California's five major elements of climate adaptation: fire, drought, flood, temperature, and sea level rise. Is the state ready for the changes everyone knows are coming? ( Link)
Upcoming Opportunities
Call for proposals now open for the Statewide Energy Efficiency Forum
The Statewide Energy Efficiency Forum (June 20-21, Sacramento) is now accepting session and poster proposals, providing an opportunity to showcase best practices, local projects, and innovative strategies for energy efficiency and sustainability. The forum encourages creative and interactive sessions that engage a broad spectrum of energy and sustainability practitioners, have a strong implementation focus, and demonstrate replicability. ( Link)
Low Carbon Transit Operations Program
The Low Carbon Transit Operations Program (LCTOP) provides funding for operating and capital costs for transit agencies to reduce greenhouse gas emission and improve mobility, with a priority on serving disadvantaged communities. Approved projects in LCTOP will support new or expanded bus or rail services, expand intermodal transit facilities, and may include equipment acquisition, fueling, maintenance and other costs to operate those services or facilities, with each project reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Deadline: March 30, 2018. ( Link)
Help us Honor our City of Trees and its Tree Heroes! 
Help the Sacramento Tree Foundation recognize the people and projects that make TREEmendous contributions to the City of Trees by nominating a Tree Hero. Tree Heroes showcase the tree-healthy behaviors supported and promoted by the Sacramento Tree Foundation. Awardees will be recognized at the annual Tree Hero Awards Celebration on May 30, 2018. Please consider nominating a Tree Hero for one of several awards by April 1. ( Link)
Round 2 Solicitation Open for the Urban Greening Grant Program
The California Natural Resources Agency is announcing the open solicitation period for the Urban Greening Grant Program. Please read the Guidelines, Application, and Forms in their entirety for information on project eligibility, evaluation criteria, and submission requirements. Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend a technical workshop (February 14), which will include breakout sessions to provide guidance in preparing applications. Deadline: April 11 at 5:00 pm. ( CNRA)
Free technical assistance for the Active Transportation Program - apply today!
The Local Government Commission is offering free assistance to 3-5 disadvantaged and/or low-income communities that are interested in applying for funding from the Active Transportation Program (ATP). The Strategic Growth Council is expected to release the call for proposals for the next round of ATP funding in May, with approximately $440 million available for project implementation, programs, and plans. Fill out this short survey by April 6 to apply. ( Link)
CARB: Community Air Grants Program
The California Air Resources Board has created the Community Air Grants Program to provide support for community-based organizations to participate in the AB 617 process, and to build their own capacities to become active partners with government to identify, evaluate, and ultimately reduce air pollution and exposure to harmful emissions in their communities. For fiscal year 2017-2018, the program has $5 million in grant funding available for projects such as public education, community and neighborhood-level meetings, charrettes, community health surveys, needs assessments, data collection, technical assistance, and more. Deadline: April 12. ( Link)
Strategic Growth Council: Climate Change Research Program
The Strategic Growth Council has released the solicitation for the first round of its new Climate Change Research Program. Interested parties are encouraged to send written questions to by 5pm on Monday, March 12. Deadline: 5pm on April 13, 2018. ( SGC)
Partner with CivicSpark and receive support for your climate work
CivicSpark, a Governor's Initiative AmeriCorps program, is now accepting project applications for the 2018-19 Service Year! The program is offering three thematic tracks: Climate (50 openings), Water (20 openings), and a new Opportunity Access track (20 openings) that will focus on affordable housing, alternative transportation, and rural broadband. Second priority deadline: May 1. ( Link)
PG&E: Better Together Resilient Communities Grant Program
PG&E established the Better Together Resilient Grant Program to invest $2 million over five years - or $400,000 per year - in shareholder-funded grants to support local initiatives to build greater climate resilience throughout Northern and Central California. In 2018, PG&E is requesting grant proposals around the theme of increased extreme heat events. Eligible projects include research, planning or demonstration projects that better prepare communities for a future with more frequent and extreme heat events. Eligible applicants must have a local government within PG&E's northern and central California service area as a partner. Deadline: May 11. ( Link)
Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Mini Grant Program
SACOG will award mini-grants of up to $3,000 per project in support of small events and non-infrastructure programs or projects that encourage biking, walking, riding transit, carpooling, vanpooling and teleworking, as options for reducing car trips and vehicles miles traveled. Projects that focus on testing a new strategy or tactic for changing travel behavior will be prioritized. Applications considered on a rolling basis until $30,000 has been awarded for each of two application phases. The first phase will run from January 16 through June 30, 2018. The second phase will open July 15 through December 31, 2018. ( Link)
Upcoming Events
Webinar: SACOG's 2020 MTP/SCS Update
Thursday, March 22, 2-3.30pm
SACOG is providing an update on the 2020 Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy for member agency staff, local air districts, transit agencies, and any other interested participants. The webinar will cover calendar and milestones, the current state of housing production in the region, land use forecast, a proposed approach for creating a regional land use and transportation scenario for 2035 and 2040, and an update on GHG targets. ( Link)           
Power Up: Residential Energy Efficiency and Resiliency
Thursday, March 22, 10-11.30am
Please join this Department of Energy Better Buildings Network peer exchange call to discuss strategies targeted at increasing both energy efficiency and resilience. ( Webinar)
Clean Air Partnership Luncheon: Air Quality Advocacy in the Capital Region
Friday, March 23, 11.30am-1.30pm
KVIE Community Room, 2030 W El Camino Avenue, Sacramento
The Cleaner Air Partnership will provide an update on newly expanded efforts for air quality advocacy at both the state and the federal level, especially to ensure that our region wins a proportionate share of cap and trade funds for air quality-related work. Please RSVP. ( Register)
Webinar: Teaming Up for Urban Forestry: New Tools to Build and Energize Local Sustainability Efforts
Tuesday, March 27, 10-11.30am
One of the biggest challenges to growing any community's urban forest is building a team of foresters, planners, policymakers, and the public. The Vibrant Cities Lab, launched by the U.S. Forest Service, American Forests and the National Association of Regional Councils, is an innovative, multi-faceted resource that can help build, inform and energize that team. This webinar will explore the resources available to help policymakers and municipal executives make decisions about the future of their community's forests, and to learn how urban forestry can help drive progress toward smart growth and sustainability goals. ( Register)
Webinar: Stormwater Standards for the Future - Environmental and Financial Benefits of Adopting Local Stormwater Regulations
Wednesday, March 28, 10-11am
This webinar will highlight an innovative approach to modelling stormwater pollution load reductions to demonstrate cost effective environmental benefits from implementing model stormwater standards in New Hampshire communities. The webinar will showcase modeling approaches, potential pollutant load reductions expected, and share model ordinance language which can be replicated in other communities to achieve water quality results. ( Register)
ARCCA Learning Session: Navigating Coastal Resilience Strategy Development
Friday, March 30, 1-2pm
The Resilient Coastlines Project of Greater San Diego will share lessons learned about the benefits and challenges of trigger policies being developing in San Diego communities and insight from their legal risk analysis. ( Link)
ICARP Technical Advisory Council Meeting
Monday, April 2, 1-3.30pm
Bay Area Metro Center, 375 Beale Street, San Francisco
Please join the Governor's Office of Planning and Research for the first 2018 Quarterly meeting of the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program's (ICARP) Technical Advisory Council (TAC). While all TAC meetings are open to public participation, this meeting will feature a half-day public workshop for practitioners and stakeholders to engage with the Council's Adaptation Vision Framework effort. Building on the Council's work from 2017, the workshop will focus on identifying the types of public sector actions that are needed to advance state and local adaptation and resiliency efforts, with special emphasis on identifying how to effectively institutionalize adaptation into existing practices and agency objectives. ( Register)
2018 California Tribal Water Summit
April 4-5, 2018
McClellan Conference Center, 5411 Luce Avenue, McClellan Park, CA
The Tribal Water Summit is an event designed to address a wide array of issues, regarding concerns from the upper watershed to the downstream beneficiaries, between the State of California agencies and California Native American Tribes. The purpose of this Summit is to continue the collaboration between Tribes and the State by including Tribal perspectives and contributions into the California Water Plan Update. ( Register)
Energy Storage: Meeting California's Clean and Reliable Energy Goals
Monday, April 23, 8.15am-5pm
SMUD Customer Service Center, Rubicon Room, 6301 S Street, Sacramento
Join the Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition and SMUD for an information and networking forum on energy storage for local government energy professionals. Speakers will provide insights on California's Energy Storage Roadmap, the state of the technology, emerging policy, decision-making tools for implementation and first-hand project experience. ( Link)
Webinar: Powering and Empowering Communities with Resilient Solar
Thursday, April 5, 10-11.30am
Cities are exploring how the technologies of resilient solar can advance their goals to strengthen communities, aid emergency preparedness plans, and protect and support vulnerable populations during disasters. This webinar, presented by the   Institute for Sustainable Communities, will tell the stories of trailblazing resilient solar projects in New York, San Francisco, and Baltimore. ( Link)
Dirt Matters: Healthy Soils for a Productive and Sustainable California
Wednesday, April 11, noon-1pm
UC Center Sacramento, Room LL3, 1130 K Street, Sacramento
Many common agricultural practices degrade soil health, threatening long-term agricultural productivity. Healthy soil promotion practices could play a major role in addressing key environmental challenges in California, including reducing harmful nutrient losses and increasing water security. Professor Timothy Bowles will discuss cases in California on how farmers are working to build soil health and how this impacts the benefits we derive from soils. ( Link)
Save the date for the 3rd California Adaptation Forum
August 27-29, 2018, Sacramento, CA
Join the Local Government Commission and the State of California at the 3rd California Adaptation Forum taking place August 27-29 (with pre-forum workshops on August 27), 2018, in Downtown Sacramento. The Forum gathers a multidisciplinary audience of 600+ climate leaders to foster knowledge exchange, innovation, and mutual support to transition from adaptation awareness to planning and action through a series of engaging plenaries, sessions, workshops, networking activities, and more. ( Link)
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.