Climate Mitigation and Adaptation News
September 22, 2016
A biweekly newsletter of the Climate Readiness Collaborative

We had an enriching and valuable time at the California Adaptation Forum in Long Beach, and hope that you were able to join us. If you missed it, CivicSpark Fellows were on hand to capture key takeaways from all the sessions in Daily Digests. We'd like to thank the Local Government Commission for hosting this wonderful event, designing a dynamic program, and for making sure the event is inclusive and representative of all California communities. 

We are also proud to announce that the American Society of Adaptation Professionals presented its first-ever Regional Adaptation Leadership Award to Larry Greene, the Executive Director of the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District. Larry helped to found and chair the Capital Region Climate Readiness Collaborative and now serves as the current chair of the statewide Alliance of Regional Collaboratives for Climate Adaptation. His tireless dedication to climate action, collaborative approach, and ability to frame the climate challenge has helped CRC build a diverse coalition of cross-sector and cross-jurisdictional stakeholders around climate adaptation. We are very proud of this recognition for Larry! 
Sacramento County wins recognition for designing healthy, sustainable communities 
Sacramento County and the Design 4 Active Sacramento Coalition (D4AS, WALKSacramento) will receive the International Excellence Award from the NYC Center for Active Design, the founders of Active Design. Active Design activates and embeds health into land uses, transportation, and community design for improved health outcomes and climate resiliency. The award recognizes this cross-sector team and their work with the County in embedding health and sustainability into the County's Zoning Code and Design Guidelines adopted by the Board of Supervisors in July 2015. WALKSacramento and D4AS have been working at all scales; across the county, region, and state providing technical assistance to local governments and communities to improve residents' health through the way we plan, design and build our communities. Contact Kirin Kumar ( or Judy Robinson at Sacramento County ( to learn more. ( Link)
California signs landmark bill to reduce powerful but short-lived climate pollutants
Photo: Eric Risberg / AP Photo
In addition to the landmark SB 32 - which sets a target of reducing California's GHG emissions 40% below 1990 levels by 2030 - this legislative session saw the passage of another critical climate law that will require the state to reduce emissions of short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs). While carbon dioxide accounts for 84% of California's GHG emissions, SLCPs such as methane, hydrofluorocarbons, and black carbon (soot) are responsible for 44% of the total warming effect. Thus, the emissions reductions required by SB 1383 will have an immediate impact in helping to slow the rate of global warming, while also delivering health and air quality benefits across California. ( San Diego Union-Tribune)
Paris climate agreement poised to come into force 
Photo: Richard Drew/AP
Thirty-one countries formally signed up for the Paris deal at the UN general assembly in New York on September 21, making it increasingly likely the Paris Climate Agreement would be fully ratified by the end of the year. New signees include Brazil, the world's seventh largest emitter of greenhouse gases, Mexico, the oil-rich United Arab Emirates, and countries highly vulnerable to sea level rise, such as Kiribati and Bangladesh. The pledges mean that a total of 60 countries, representing 47.7% of global emissions, have now formally joined the Paris agreement. A minimum of 55 nations representing at least 55% of global emissions are required for the deal to come into force. Both UN General Secretary Ban-Ki Moon and US secretary of state John Kerry predict that the agreement will be fully implemented within months. ( Guardian)
Other news
It has been nearly a month since our last CRC newsletter, so here is a quick run-down of some news you may have missed.
  • FEMA proposes to require federally funded construction to be built on higher ground and not in floodplains. This means 2 feet above the 1%-chance annual flood levels for most projects, but for critical projects like hospitals and nursing homes, FEMA could use even stricter standards - like requiring projects to apply the latest available climate science.  (Federal Register; link)
  • Millennials could lose $8.8 billion in lifetime income due to economic impacts of climate change. For a child born in 2015, this grows to $357,000 in lifetime income and $581,000 in overall wealth. (NextGen Climate)
  • The planet is warming at a pace not experienced in the last 1,000 years, making it very unlikely that the world will stay within the crucial temperature limit of 1.5 C, says NASA. Research suggests that just five more years of GHG emissions at current levels will virtually wipe out any chance of limiting temperature rise to 1.5C. (Guardian)
  • All new buildings in Vancouver will be zero emissions by 2030. City officials say the policy is driven by climate goals, but another outcome will be significant improvements in construction quality, health, and comfort. The compliance schedule is fast: the sooner new buildings achieve zero-emissions, the fewer buildings that will require costly retrofits. (Green Tech Media)
  • California highways could soon generate electricity: The California Energy Commission has approved a pilot project in which piezoelectric crystals embedded in highways will generate electricity when a car drives over them.  (EcoWatch)         
  • Trees talk to each other to build resilience: Trees use a network of soil fungi to communicate their needs, send warning signals, search for kin, and transfer their nutrients to neighboring plants before they die. These networks can help forest resilience during climate change but are also threatened by changing ecologies. (Yale 360)
  • Coffee in the wild could be extinct by 2080. Climate change is going to halve the area suitable for coffee production and impact the livelihoods of more than 120 million of the world's poorest people who rely on the coffee economy. Most coffee growers are poor smallholders, and their ability to adapt without assistance is limited. (Guardian)
  • If anyone tells you the climate is always changing, show them this cartoon. Yes, the earth has endured some extremes of hot and cold over 4.5 billion years, but the period of 12,000 years that encompasses the entirety of human civilization is characterized by remarkable climate stability. (Vox)
Policy Brief: Climate Adaptation and Resilience in the FY 2016-2017 California Budget
Four Twenty Seven's new policy brief provides a detailed analysis of California's budget on climate adaptation and resilience, delving into how the state is trying to make good on its policy commitments by providing enough funding and guidance to build resilience. ( 427)
Sierra CAMP: Policy Recommendations for the 2017 update of Safeguarding California: Reducing Climate Risk
This policy white paper, from our partner climate adaptation collaborative Sierra CAMP, synthesizes biophysical research and the policy expertise of the Sierra Nevada region to make recommendations for the state's 2017 update of its climate adaptation plan Safeguarding California: Reducing Climate Risk. The paper examines climate impacts on the Sierra Nevada region and analyzes the opportunities for climate mitigation and adaptation. ( Link)
U.S. EPA: Climate Change Indicators in the United States
EPA's new 2016 edition of Climate Change Indicators in the U.S. shows compelling and clear evidence of long-term changes to our climate, and highlights impacts on human health and the environment in the US and globally. The report contains observed trend data on 37 climate indicators, including seven new ones, and a feature on climate and health.  (  US EPA)
FACT SHEET: President Obama Takes A Historic Step To Address The National Security Implications Of Climate Change
On September 21st, the President signed a Presidential Memorandum (PM) on Climate Change and National Security, establishing a policy that the impacts of climate change must be considered in the development of national security-related doctrine, policies, and plans. Additionally, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy released a report from the National Intelligence Council identifying pathways through which climate change will likely pose significant national security challenges for the United States over the next two decades, including threatening the stability of other countries. ( Link)
Upcoming Opportunities
National Adaptation Forum: Call for Session Proposals
The National Adaptation Forum is now accepting proposals for symposia, training sessions, and working groups that reflect the best thinking in the adaptation field, informed by theory, research, and practice, on key subjects related to the focal topics and cross-cutting themes. Deadline: September 30, 2016. View instructions and apply today.
Free technical assistance for transit-oriented development
Each year, the Federal Transit Administration in partnership with Smart Growth America offers free technical assistance to communities to develop tools, guidance, and other resources for enhancing transit-oriented development (TOD) within transit corridors or around a public transportation station, and in economically distressed communities. Any unit or subdivision of state, regional, local, or tribal governments with an active federally funded transit capital project are eligible to apply. Deadline: Friday, October 7, 5pm. ( More information)
Job Opportunity: Statewide Local Government Energy Efficiency Best Practices Coordinator
The Local Government Commission - in partnership with the Institute for Local Government and ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability through the Statewide Energy Efficiency Collaborative - is recruiting to fill the Statewide Local Government Energy Efficiency Best Practices Coordinator position (Local Government Energy Coordinator). The scope of work will focus on assisting local governments to meet goals within the California long-term Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan. The Local Government Energy Coordinator facilitates a statewide focus both in gathering exemplary policies and practices, and tracking progress on government facility and community energy use, retrofits, and strategic plan metrics. ( Link)
Upcoming Events
CRCRC Quarterly Meeting
Friday, October 14, 9.30am-1.30pm
City of Sacramento, New City Hall, Conference Room 1119, 915 I Street, Sacramento
The Quarterly Meeting is scheduled for Friday, October 14th between 9:30am - 1:30pm, with lunch and networking from 12:30-1:30pm. During this meeting we will hear about Sacramento-focused urban heat research and the direct impacts of heat on communities in our region, as well as examples and lessons learned from other regions. We will hear about past and current efforts our region is undertaking to reduce urban heat and then have the opportunity to discuss and brainstorm what we can do moving forward. (Register)
UC Davis Pavement Center Tour
Thursday, October 27, 9.30-11.30am
3327 Apiary Drive, Davis
Following the Quarterly Meeting, the CRC will visit the  UC Davis Pavement Research Center on  Thursday, October 27th from  9:30-11:30am to learn about their exciting research on cool pavements. The tour will cover an overview of their research, life cycle analysis work, and studies around permeable pavements and other related research. We will also have the chance to tour their pavement garden, where they are currently collecting data on cool pavements. ( Register)
Cleaner Air Partnership Quarterly Luncheon
Friday, September 23, 11.30am-1.30pm
This is an opportunity to gather with representatives from local government, business, health and environmental communities to hear about important air quality topics affecting our region. The Director of Community Health and Outreach from Dignity Health will speak about community health needs assessments and how they are used to benefit focus communities, and Valley Vision will share regional findings from the 2016 Community Health Needs Assessment and how they are connected to air quality. ( Register)
ARCCA Learning Session: Overview of the USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment
Tuesday, September 27, 1-2pm PDT
Join ARCCA to learn about the U.S. Global Change Research Program's scientific assessment on the impacts of climate change on human health in the U.S. Developed by 100+ experts, this report represents a significant improvement in scientific confidence in the link between climate change and a broad range of public health threats. The webinar will highlight overarching messages, key findings, and an overview of publicly accessible materials. ( Register)
Webinar: Let's Talk Health and Climate
Friday, September 30, 10-11am
ecoAmerica's research team will present a comprehensive overview of their brand new Let's Talk Health and Climate guide, a resource designed to help you speak to the health and healthcare community about our changing climate. This guide helps health professionals engage productively with their peers and patients on climate change by drawing attention to research-tested words, phrases, and language that resonates most with this particular audience. During the webinar, you will learn about our research-based findings, key messages, and tips for designing your own effective climate communications. ( Register)
Workshop: Overcoming Financial and Organizational Barriers to Local Adaptation
Friday, October 21, 1-5pm
915 I Street, Sacramento
Join us for an interactive, discussion-based workshop to better understand the financial and organizational barriers that local governments in California face in implementing adaptation strategies. This workshop will provide opportunities to learn about financing needs in California, practical opportunities for funding adaptation, what institutional and organizational barriers hinder work on adaptation, and how to move your organization to higher levels of capacity. We encourage you to attend this workshop if you work in, with, or for local governments on adaptation research, planning, financing, funding and/or implementation. There are also workshops scheduled for the Sierra Nevada (Truckee, Oct. 26), Central Valley (Tulare, Sept. 29), and the North Coast (Eureka, Oct. 25). ( Register)
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.