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Climate	  Change	  Vulnerability	  Assessment	  and	  Preparedness	  Planning	  	  in	  Cambridge,	  MA	  	  by	  Susanne	...
§ Popula9on:	  	  105,162	  (2010)	  § Area:	  	  6.26	  square	  miles	  § Employment:	  111,447	  (2008)	  § Mixed-­...
How	  Cambridge	  Got	  Started	  1990  Recycling	  Ordinance,	  curbside	  recycling	  begins;	  Environment	  Program	  ...
§ Climate	  Ac9on	  Plan	  adopted	  by	  City	  Council	  late	  2002	  § Focus	  on	  mi9ga9on	  § Climate	  Protec9o...
Key	  Recommenda=ons	  •  Some	  degree	  of	  climate	  change	  is	  unavoidable	  •  Cambridge	  is	  vulnerable	  to	 ...
Temperature	  Precipita9on	  Sea	  level	  rise	  Extreme	  weather	  Vulnerability:	  Key	  Concerns	  
Es9mated	  flooding	  on	  Oct.	  29th	  
If	  surge	  had	  hit	  at	  high	  9de	  Oct	  29th	  
Surge	  at	  high	  9de	  +	  2.5	  e	  SLR	  	  
Star=ng	  the	  Process	  • Funding	  included	  in	  FY13	  budget	  for	  vulnerability	  assessment	  and	  adapta9on	 ...
1.  Vulnerability	  Assessment	  (2012-­‐2013)	  •  Provide	  technical	  and	  scien9fic	  informa9on	  for	  assessing	  ...
Vulnerability	  Assessment	  Process	  1.  Climate	  Scenarios	  2.  Impact	  analyses	  •  Infrastructure	  and	  buildin...
Vulnerability	  Ranking	  
Sensi=vity	  •  Sensi9vity	  =	  Degree	  to	  which	  a	  built,	  natural,	  or	  human	  system	  is	  directly	  or	  ...
Adap=ve	  Capacity	  •  Adap9ve	  Capacity	  =	  The	  degree	  of	  built,	  natural,	  or	  human	  systems	  to	  accom...
 	  6	  members,	  climate	  experts	  from	  Harvard,	  MIT	  and	  BU	  •  Small,	  highly	  technical	  mee9ngs	  •  Ke...
 	  	  •  16	  members	  represen9ng	  key	  stakeholder	  groups	  (agencies,	  ins9tu9ons,	  businesses,	  residents,	  ...
 	  	  •  3	  Public	  Workshops	  (evenings	  or	  weekends)	  •  Intent	  is	  to	  get	  50-­‐100	  people	  to	  a@end...
 	  •  A@ending	  mee9ngs	  of	  neighborhood,	  business	  and	  interest	  groups	  •  Project	  website,	  listserv	  •...
Q	  &	  A	  •  For	  more	  informa9on:	  	  h@p://
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Susanne Rasmussen 2013 masccc


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Susanne Rasmussen 2013 masccc

  1. 1. Climate  Change  Vulnerability  Assessment  and  Preparedness  Planning    in  Cambridge,  MA    by  Susanne  Rasmussen  Director  of  Environmental  &Transporta9on  Planning  City  of  Cambridge    at  Massachuse@s  Sustainable  Communi9es  Conference  Worcester,  MA  April  24,  2013  
  2. 2. § Popula9on:    105,162  (2010)  § Area:    6.26  square  miles  § Employment:  111,447  (2008)  § Mixed-­‐use,  high-­‐density  About  Cambridge,  MA  § Significant  buildings  and  infrastructure  near  Charles  River  and  Alewife  Brook  § Neighborhoods  on  filled  land  
  3. 3. How  Cambridge  Got  Started  1990  Recycling  Ordinance,  curbside  recycling  begins;  Environment  Program  established  1992  Vehicle  Trip  Reduc9on  Ordinance  directs  city  toward  emphasis  on  non-­‐automobile  transport  1995  Parking  &  Transporta9on  Demand  Management  Ordinance  1999  Cambridge  joins  ICLEI-­‐Local  Governments  for  Sustainability  &  conducts  GHG  emissions  inventory  
  4. 4. § Climate  Ac9on  Plan  adopted  by  City  Council  late  2002  § Focus  on  mi9ga9on  § Climate  Protec9on  Advisory  Commi@ee  ,  represen9ng  residents,  business  and  universi9es,  recommends  adding  adap9on  focus  in  2010  Mi=ga=on  vs  Adap=on?  
  5. 5. Key  Recommenda=ons  •  Some  degree  of  climate  change  is  unavoidable  •  Cambridge  is  vulnerable  to  sea  level  rise  and  storm  surge  flooding  •  Climate  change  can  cause  a  wide  range  of  public  health  impacts  •  Impacts  to  water  supply,  food  supply,  energy  system  reliability,  surface  water  quality,  and  transporta9on  are  expected  •  Physical  impacts  can  lead  to  social  and  economic  impacts  •  It  is  important  to  start  planning  now  
  6. 6. Temperature  Precipita9on  Sea  level  rise  Extreme  weather  Vulnerability:  Key  Concerns  
  7. 7. Es9mated  flooding  on  Oct.  29th  
  8. 8. If  surge  had  hit  at  high  9de  Oct  29th  
  9. 9. Surge  at  high  9de  +  2.5  e  SLR    
  10. 10. Star=ng  the  Process  • Funding  included  in  FY13  budget  for  vulnerability  assessment  and  adapta9on  plan  • RFP  process  to  find  consultant  team  with  exper9se  in  climate  change  modeling  and  impact  analysis  • Kleinfelder,  Cambridge-­‐based  engineering  firm  with  addi9onal  experts  in  scenario  development,  risk  modeling,  public  health,  economic  impacts  and  stakeholder  engagement  
  11. 11. 1.  Vulnerability  Assessment  (2012-­‐2013)  •  Provide  technical  and  scien9fic  informa9on  for  assessing  risk  and  vulnerability  •  Iden9fy  priority  planning  areas  •  Establish  stakeholder  engagement  processes    2.  Preparedness  Planning  (2014-­‐2015)  •  Iden9fy  measures  to  prepare  for  changes  likely  to  occur  from  climate  change  •  Adopt  implementa9on  measures    Two  stage  process  
  12. 12. Vulnerability  Assessment  Process  1.  Climate  Scenarios  2.  Impact  analyses  •  Infrastructure  and  buildings  •  Public  health  •  Economic  •  Urban  forest  3.  Vulnerability  analysis  4.  Risk  assessment  5.  Priority  preparedness  planning  areas  
  13. 13. Vulnerability  Ranking  
  14. 14. Sensi=vity  •  Sensi9vity  =  Degree  to  which  a  built,  natural,  or  human  system  is  directly  or  indirectly  affected  by  changes  in  climate  condi9ons  or  specific  climate  change  impacts.    •  Example:    A  building  without    air  condi9oning  and  housing    elderly  residents  is  highly    sensi9ve  to  increased    temperatures.  
  15. 15. Adap=ve  Capacity  •  Adap9ve  Capacity  =  The  degree  of  built,  natural,  or  human  systems  to  accommodate  changes  in  climate  with  minimal  poten9al  damage  or  cost,  or  to  take  advantage  of  opportuni9es  presented  by  climate  change.  •  Example:    Electrical  systems  fi@ed  with  equipment  that  is  salt  resistance  have  higher  adap9ve  capacity  in  terms  of  responding  to  flooding  from  the  ocean.        
  16. 16.    6  members,  climate  experts  from  Harvard,  MIT  and  BU  •  Small,  highly  technical  mee9ngs  •  Key  responsibili9es  •  Review  technical  approach  by  project  team  and  give  guidance/input  on  scenario  development,  modeling  •  Lend  credibility  to  study,  basis  for  preparedness  plan  •  LOTS  of  feedback  already  on:  •  Uncertainty  of  climate  models  and  the  challenges  in  downscaling  an9cipated  impacts  •  Value  of  building  on  lessons  from  elsewhere,  for  example  Hurricane  Sandy,  and  use  of  “war  gaming”  Expert  Advisory  Panel  
  17. 17.      •  16  members  represen9ng  key  stakeholder  groups  (agencies,  ins9tu9ons,  businesses,  residents,  etc.)  •  These  mee9ngs  will  be  somewhat  technical  •  Key  responsibili9es  •  To  learn  about  the  project    •  To  share  informa9on  with  technical  team  •  To  act  as  liaisons  to  their  organiza9ons  and  agencies  •  Also  engaging  with  the  City  of  Boston,  e.g.  Boston  Water  and  Sewer  Commission’s    25-­‐year  asset  management  plan  Technical  Advisory  CommiRee  
  18. 18.      •  3  Public  Workshops  (evenings  or  weekends)  •  Intent  is  to  get  50-­‐100  people  to  a@end,  seeking  wide  par9cipa9on  through  many  outreach  strategies  •  Designed  so  people  can  talk  to  each  other  •  Key  expecta9ons:  •  Provide  input,  local  knowledge  •  Share  perspec9ves  on  early  work  •  Act  as  liaisons  into  the  community  about  the  project  •  Hurricane  Sandy  greatly  increased  the  public’s  interest  in  preparedness  planning  Public  Workshops  
  19. 19.    •  A@ending  mee9ngs  of  neighborhood,  business  and  interest  groups  •  Project  website,  listserv  •  Focus  groups  as  needed  •  Surveys  •  CHALLENGES:  •  High  degree  of  uncertainty  •  Poten9al  impact  are  scary  •  But,  not  happening  right  now  •  Need  to  learn  how  to  engage  public  as  we  go  along  Other  Engagement  Strategies  
  20. 20. Q  &  A  •  For  more  informa9on:    h@p://  20