Climate Resilience Toolkit: A Framework For Understanding And Addressing Climate Issues.

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Photo shows the coastal area of Horseshoe Beach, Bermuda.  Photo by Touristang Pobre.

Earthniversity would like to share the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit which is now available on-line.

According to its website, “The Climate Resilience Toolkit provides resources and a framework for understanding and addressing the climate issues that impact people and their communities.”

While this Toolkit is prepared for use of the different communities in the United States, this can also be a very helpful tool to enable the various communities and Local Government Units, specifically in the Third World Countries and other parts of the globe in their planning and implementation of programs and projects designed to mitigate the effects of the Changing Climate.

This Toolkit covers the 5 Major Headings:

1.  GET STARTED  – this is the Overview covering the five (5) steps:

The (5) steps with this acronym – I DIET.

Step 1 – Identify the Problem – Focus on climate stressors that threaten people, buildings, natural resources, or the economy in your area.

Step 2 – Determine Vulnerabilities – Identify specific populations, locations, and infrastructure that may be impacted by the climate problem you identified.

Step 3 – Investigate Options – Compile a list of potential solutions, drawing on the experiences of others who have addressed similar problems.

Step 4 – Evaluate Risks & Costs – Consider risks and values to analyze the costs and benefits of favored options. Select the best solution for your situation and make a plan.

Step 5 – Take Action – Implement your plan and monitor your progress. As necessary, adjust your plan to move toward your desired outcomes. Be prepared to iterate, if needed. (Iterate means – to say or do again and again and again. Similar to reiterate.  Source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary.)

Major Heading number 2 to 5 are as follows:

2.  TAKING ACTION – presents the Case Studies of Resilience In Action.

3.  TOOLS – Examples are: Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service; Airborne LIDAR Data Processing and Analysis Tools; Annual Greenhouse Gas Index (AGGI); Beach-fx; Carbon Tracker; Climate At A Glance and 30 other tools.

Here, you need the services of an expert that maybe available outside your LGU (Local Government Unit) or Office or maybe a member of the staff who can undergo training with well-known and accredited trainers in the area.

4.  TOPICS – the acronym is CEFH and these are:  Coastal Flood Risk; Ecosystem Vulnerability; Food Resilience and Human Health.  From these suggested topics, you can start your discussion on what Issues you will tackle first and what strategies, targets, programs and projects, you are going to implement and who are the people that will be involved, among others.

5.  EXPERTISE – This covers Training Courses and Finding Experts.  Capability Building is the term used in most LGUs to mean, a training of  personnel who works for the mitigation of Climate Change.  An LGU may tie-up with Foreign Governments Assistance Window on Climate Change to avail of funding and training support.  You can check the websites of embassies of foreign government in your area and check the assistance window available for this purpose.  The Local Chief Executive may write a letter of intention to ask for assistance, as a start.  If the LGU can finance its own programs for Climate Change, the better.

For a detailed discussion and guide, please refer to the link stated hereunder.  Thank you.

http://toolkit.climate.gov/

Additional Information:

1.  In order to have a common frame of reference of the word “Mitigation”, we will use the description adopted by FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency of the United States.  According to FEMA, mitigation is described as “the effort to reduce loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters. Mitigation is taking action now—before the next disaster—to reduce human and financial consequences later (analyzing risk, reducing risk, insuring against risk).  Effective mitigation requires that we all understand local risks, address the hard choices and invest in long-term community well-being. Without mitigation actions, we jeopardize our safety, financial security and self-reliance. ”

Source: U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit at this link:

http://toolkit.climate.gov/

2.  Also, as an additional input on the evidence of climate change, we will use the nine (9) evidence of Climate Change as pointed out by NASA.  These are:

1.  Sea Level Rise – Global sea level rose about 17 centimeters (6.7 inches) in the last century. The rate in the last decade, however, is nearly double that of the last century.4

Source: U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit at this link –   http://toolkit.climate.gov/

2.  Global Temperature Rise – All three major global surface temperature reconstructions show that Earth has warmed since 1880.5 Most of this warming has occurred since the 1970s, with the 20 warmest years having occurred since 1981 and with all 10 of the warmest years occurring in the past 12 years.6 Even though the 2000s witnessed a solar output decline resulting in an unusually deep solar minimum in 2007-2009, surface temperatures continue to increase.7

3.  Warming Oceans – The oceans have absorbed much of this increased heat, with the top 700 meters (about 2,300 feet) of ocean showing warming of 0.302 degrees Fahrenheit since 1969.8

4.  Shrinking Ice Sheets – The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have decreased in mass. Data from NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment show Greenland lost 150 to 250 cubic kilometers (36 to 60 cubic miles) of ice per year between 2002 and 2006, while Antarctica lost about 152 cubic kilometers (36 cubic miles) of ice between 2002 and 2005.

5.  Declining Arctic Sea Ice – Both the extent and thickness of Arctic sea ice has declined rapidly over the last several decades.9

6.  Glacial Retreat – Glaciers are retreating almost everywhere around the world — including in the Alps, Himalayas, Andes, Rockies, Alaska and Africa.10

7.  Extreme Events – The number of record high temperature events in the United States has been increasing, while the number of record low temperature events has been decreasing, since 1950. The U.S. has also witnessed increasing numbers of intense rainfall events.11

8.  Ocean Acidification – Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, the acidity of surface ocean waters has increased by about 30 percent.12,13 This increase is the result of humans emitting more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and hence more being absorbed into the oceans. The amount of carbon dioxide absorbed by the upper layer of the oceans is increasing by about 2 billion tons per year.14,15

9.  Decreased Snow Cover – Satellite observations reveal that the amount of spring snow cover in the Northern Hemisphere has decreased over the past five decades and that the snow is melting earlier.16

You can also check these current issues in this link:

http://toolkit.climate.gov/topics/coastal-flood-risk

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Photo shows the afternoon clouds that shelter the Royal Naval Dockyard, Bermuda.  Photo by Touristang Pobre

To learn more about the impacts of climate change and variability in COASTAL AREAS, visit the subtopic pages:

The foregoing list can also help planners and implementing agencies in  the formulation of programs and projects aimed at mitigating the effects of the changing climate.

In closing, Earthniversity would like to thank our sources of information such as:

1. The White House Facebook Page and the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit, through this link:

http://toolkit.climate.gov/

2. NASA through this link:

http://www.climate.nasa.gov/evidence/

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Photos by Henry Libo-on

Traveling to Bermuda Island?  Please visit this link

http://www.touristangpobre.blogspot.com

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