California Office of Planning and Research Releases ICARP Impact Report

California has long been a leader in addressing and understanding climate change, from setting globally ambitious greenhouse gas reduction goals, to committed investments in actionable climate science, to investing in place-based, community driven solutions. As one of the most climate stressed places in the world, California experiences profound and varied impacts across the state’s vast expanse. As a result, it is paramount that policymakers address the state’s vulnerability to climate change while also equitably transitioning to a carbon neutral economy.

Connecticut’s Crumbling Concrete: Coordinating Federal Resources for a Non-Declared Event

As many as 34,000 homes constructed in northeastern Connecticut between 1983 and 2000 may have concrete foundations containing pyrrhotite and are at risk of cracking or crumbling. Pyrrhotite is an iron sulfide that can be found naturally in aggregates, or rocky materials such as gravel, sand, or stone that are added to cement to make concrete. When iron sulfides are exposed to oxygen and water, a series of chemical reactions convert the iron sulfides into other compounds.

Out Of Harm’s Way: Relocation Strategies To Reduce Flood Risk

Kinston, a city of about 20,000 in Lenoir County, North Carolina, suffered repeated flood losses during the 1990s. After Hurricanes Fran, Dennis, and Floyd damaged or flooded more than 75 percent of the county’s homes, the community embarked upon a comprehensive approach to improve resilience. Flood-prone properties were purchased, and whole neighborhoods were relocated to higher ground. As a result, natural floodplain functions were restored, and the purchase of the first 100 homes saved approximately $6 million in avoided flood losses during the next big storm.

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Building America program: Guides and Case Studies for All Climates

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Building America program has developed a series of technology-specific case studies and best practices guides that may be applicable to all climate zones.

These case studies from Building America research teams and national laboratories describe energy-saving solutions for both new and existing homes, classified into four categories.

Finding Land Solutions to Climate Displacement: A Challenge Like Few Others

Climate displacement - a phenomenon expected to eventually affect hundreds of millions of people - by its very nature implies that people and communities can no longer reside in their traditional homes and that they will require new living arrangements to replace their former homes and lands. This much is clear. What is less clear, however, is where these people will go, who is responsible for them and what policies should be pursued to give climate displaced people the best chance to start life over in the most dignified manner possible.

Flash Flooding: Impact of Community Participation and Planning on Recovery

Ellicott City is an unincorporated town in Howard County, Maryland. Founded in 1772 at the bottom of a valley by Johan and Joseph Ellicott, specifically to harness the power of the Tiber and Patapsco Rivers to power the brothers’ mills, the terrain of the city includes steep inclines and an abundance of nonporous granite. The town has been prone to flooding since its founding, with most previous floods originating from the Patapsco River at the bottom of the valley and spreading into the city.

Pre‐Disaster Planning for Post‐Disaster Recovery: Case Studies

In coordination with a consultant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the University of Oregon’s Community Planning Workshop (CPW) researched four post‐disaster recovery plans (PDRPs) developed by select communities in the United States. The purpose of this research was to find innovative post‐disaster plans that incorporate effective strategies for recovery with the intent of evaluating strategies for providing credit for such efforts as part of the Community Rating System (CRS). The case studies focus on communities at risk for flooding.

National Center for Appropriate Technology

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) has been promoting sustainable living for over 40 years. Established in 1976, we are a national nonprofit that helps people by championing small-scale, local, and sustainable solutions to reduce poverty, promote healthy communities, and protect natural resources. NCAT was originally created during the oil crisis of the 1970s to develop inexpensive energy-saving strategies for low-income communities.