WASHINGTON– As part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today released an online training module to help local government officials take actions to increase their communities’ resiliency to a changing climate. The virtual training, which was informed by the National Climate Assessment released one year ago today, was developed with advice from EPA’s Local Government Advisory Committee and is the latest addition to the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit announced in November 2014. It includes successful examples of effective resilience strategies that have been implemented in cities and towns across the country.
“Across the country, communities are being challenged by the impacts of a changing climate,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “The Obama Administration is committed to helping communities make smart decisions in the face of those challenges. EPA’s new training offers tools that can help local governments improve their ability to deliver reliable, cost-effective services even as the climate changes.”
The training explains how a changing climate may affect a variety of environmental and public health services, such as providing safe drinking water and managing the effects of drought, fires and floods. It also describes how different communities are already adapting to climate-related challenges. For example, the module describes how the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) designed its Deer Island sewage treatment plant in Boston to account for the risks posed by sea level rise over the lifetime of the facility. Chester, Pennsylvania’s use of EPA Brownfields funds to undertake redevelopment and revitalization efforts in a way that is resilient to climate change is also presented.
The training provides links to a number of federal and state resources that can help communities assess their unique climate-related risks and opportunities to become more resilient to climate change. For example, information is provided on EPA’s Climate Resiliency Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT), which helps drinking water and wastewater system operators to understand, assess, and evaluate alternative strategies for delivering services even as the climate changes. Users are also directed to the wide range of data and tools available from the federal government through the U.S. Climate Data Portal and the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit.
Local officials can access the training online at www.epa.gov/localadaptationtraining or via the Climate Resilience Toolkit at https://toolkit.climate.gov/. While the initial focus of the training is at the municipal level, additional training to help neighborhoods become climate resilient is planned.
More information about EPA’s climate adaptation activities: http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/effects/adaptation.html
To view blogs about EPA’s efforts to get communities prepared: