Thursday, December 15, 2011

Massachusetts prepares for climate change impacts

Fay Augustin in the American Rivers blog: Earlier this fall, Massachusetts released its Climate Change Adaptation Report. Following in the footsteps of many other states, such as Wisconsin, Maryland, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington, Massachusetts’ report analyzes strategies to adapt to a changing climate across many sectors from natural resources to infrastructure and the economy.

The Adaptation Report is organized in two parts; Part I provides an overview of Massachusetts’ changing climate and a set of guiding principles and strategies that cut across all sectors. Part II gives a more in-depth analysis of each of the five sectors that will be affected and provides strategies to increase their resilience against climate change. Massachusetts’ divides its plan into 5 different sectors:
  • Natural Resources and Habitat
  • Key Infrastructure
  • Human Health and Welfare
  • Local Economy and Government
  • Coastal Zone and Oceans
The report begins with a discussion on the changes in Massachusetts’ climate over the last 30 years, and then transitions into a discussion about the Massachusetts’ future climate: temperatures are projected to increase, precipitation patterns will shift and sea level rise threatens cities and coastal economies. Impacts of climate change are wide ranging throughout Massachusetts’ and will affect all sectors of society and the economy…

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