What Urban Planners Want to Know about Climate Change and Water Resources - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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What Urban Planners Want to Know about Climate Change and Water Resources

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  1. What Urban Planners Want to Know about Climate Change and Water Resources What About Water Forum American Meteorological Society March 26, 2008

  2. Climate Change Handbook NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center UNC-Asheville’s Environmental Quality Institute and National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center

  3. Climate Change Handbook Climate change science Climate change effects Climate change responses in 8 planning areas Communicating climate change Source: Union of Concerned Scientists

  4. Two Points • Why urban planners matter in climate change mitigation and adaptation. • What information do planners need to help address climate change impacts and severity with regard to water resources?

  5. The graphic shows where electricity is used in the US By the year 2035, three quarters of the built environment in the U.S. will be either new or renovated. The AIA has a carbon neutral goal by 2030. Source:American Institute of Architects (AIA) Role of Planners – Climate Change Mitigation

  6. Role of Planners – Climate Change Mitigation

  7. Role of Planners – Climate Change Adaptation Climate Change “Winners” and “Losers” • Climate change will result in migration of population. • Some communities will experience new investment and others will experience disinvestment as a result of climate change.

  8. Climate Change Adaptation • Disinvestment – identifying and living within limits. • Service limits, such as water supply. • Fiscal limits – ability to pay. • New investment - growth management. • Service limits, such as water supply. • Fiscal limits – ability to pay. • Policy limits – political willingness to accommodate new growth.

  9. What urban planners want to know • Certainty and uncertainty. • Vulnerabilities of water systems: • Flooding. • Inundation. • Drought. • Opportunities: • Agricultural practices. • Underground storage. • Technical or political fixes. • Conservation.

  10. Certainty and Uncertainty

  11. Certainty and Uncertainty

  12. Certainty and Uncertainty A great deal depends on which emissions scenario actually materializes.

  13. Perspective on Certainty "Here's what I say: I don't need perfect, I need approximate. I’ll never be a scientist. I'm a policy maker. Our job is to ask, 'Do you think this might happen?' and when the answer is yes, that's sufficient for me." Ron Sims, King County Executive, as quoted in Governing magazine

  14. Water System Vulnerability to Flooding • Contamination of downstream water supplies. • Damage to water treatment systems.

  15. Vulnerability to Inundation • Physical damage to or destruction of water treatment systems. • Contamination of groundwater and surface supplies from saltwater intrusion, diseases and pollutants.

  16. Water System Vulnerability to Drought • Changes in precipitation amounts and intensity. • Changes in snowpack storage and release. • Changes in reservoir storage. • Changes in recharge of groundwater sources. Source: USGS

  17. Water Resources Opportunities • Will changes to inefficient agricultural practices allow substantial diversion of water for potable purposes? • Where and under what circumstances do underground storage systems offer potential?

  18. Water Resources Opportunities • What is the viability for: • Use of saltwater sources? • Interbasin transfers? • Reuse of wastewater? • Xeriscaping incentives? • System upgrades and maintenance? • What is conservation’s real potential?

  19. What Urban Planners Want to Know about Climate Change and Water Resources What About Water Forum American Meteorological Society March 26, 2008