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Project Summary / Overview
The Miami-Dade Climate Change Advisory Task Force (CCATF) was created in 2006 to review climate change impacts and advise the Board of County Commissioners on priority mitigation and adaptation actions to respond to these impacts. The CCATF is made up of 25 members and seven committees representing different sectors, which are appointed by the Mayor, Commissioners, and County Manager. The seven committees include over 150 members that review specific climate change adaptation and mitigation priorities that address the built environment, economy, and natural systems. Recommendations from the CCATF are presented to the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners to develop programs, policies, and new regulations for implementation. The CCATF is coordinated and supported by the Department of Environmental Resources Management staff.
Miami-Dade County, Florida, is extremely vulnerable to climate change impacts. Already affected by extreme weather events, sea level rise, flooding, and droughts, the county has been at the cutting edge of climate change leadership. In 1990, Miami-Dade County was a founding member of the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI). Realizing the need to formulate a specific climate change plan, the Miami-Dade CCATF was created to provide solutions for climate change impacts. Established in July 2006, the CCATF was created with the unanimous adoption of Ordinance 06-113 to provide specific guidance on greenhouse gas reduction and develop priorities for climate change adaptation.
Since its inception in 2006, the CCATF has been busy in the development of priority mitigation and adaptation recommendations for Miami-Dade; a series of measures have since been implemented. Thirty-five initial recommendations were released in 2008's Second Report and Initial Recommendations. These included sea level rise mapping and benchmarks, habitat preservation for natural systems adaptation, and a GreenPrint Program.
The GreenPrint Program was initiated in 2009. It is a planning process modeled on ICLEI's five key milestones for a sustainable future. Miami-Dade County has already achieved the first milestone in conducting a sustainability assessment, and is drafting the second and third milestones in setting sustainability goals and developing a sustainability plan. The last two milestones are to implement the plans and monitor and evaluate progress.
The CCATF released its second report and another series of 22 supplemental recommendations in April 2010, which included mitigation and adaptation strategies. These include strategies to further reduce greenhouse gases, promote energy conservation and efficiency, support funding opportunities through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, conduct climate change education and outreach, integrate climate change impacts into the County’s comprehensive plans to further smart growth, and enhance the green jobs program. The CCATF meets as needed and at least twice a year to consider recommendations from the committees.
Project Outcomes and Conclusions
Since its inception, the Miami-Dade County CCATF has been working hard in developing both mitigation and adaptation priorities for the county as well as setting standards and greenhouse gas reduction programs. The implementation of these programs will help the county cope with climate change impacts. One significant achievement in the region is the implementation of the Southeast Regional Climate Compact that was signed by Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, and Monroe Counties to work on a regional integrated climate change action plan. The CCATF has recommended that the specifics of this regional plan be a priority while implementing local actions.