Thursday, June 21, 2018

Walker should read state report on climate change hazards, mitigation, planning

[Updated at 5:00 p.m. with a timely report from the Michigan UP, where people are actually doing something about this 'new normal.' And across the border in Canada, more action: 
Thunder Bay, Ontario didn’t think adaptation and mitigation for climate change should be a priority until a massive 2012 storm destroyed 5,000 homes and left the wastewater treatment plant under 45 feet of water. 
The disaster prompted the city to embark on a strategy to become a climate-ready city.]
Walker toured flood-ravaged NW Wisconsin Monday night and made emergency declarations for the area.

Similar story in 2017.

And in 2016.

Summarized here.

Does he ever wonder why he's making the same trip to deal with the same consequences, or if the matters need more attention than Boy Scout campground cleanup practices which he said made up his climate change action plan?

If only there was someplace he could read up on the issues: 
EPA has been warning about climate change flooding - - since 2003.
Like a website put up by his own state government:
WI DNR scrubs climate change information from its website
Or by other Great Lakes states, including some also run by Republican Governors:
Unlike WI, other Great Lakes states not deleting climate change information
Finally - - has he ever read his own Emergency Government agencies' (WEM) latest and detailed update in a continuous process that plans for hazard identification and mitigation to reduce repeat disasters? 

The Journal Sentinel laid it out in the wake of the disclosures that Walker's DNR had scrubbed climate change science and links from its web site.

Heck, I'll even copy out a key section or two so he doesn't have to sift through on his next disaster tour flight the lengthy state report:
4.4.2 Climate Change in the State Plan
While there remains some debate about the cause of climate change, there has been a documented change in weather patterns over time in Wisconsin. In the past 50 years, average statewide temperatures have increased by about 1.1°F. It is also likely that the state will see more extreme weather events.Section 3 of Appendix A, Thread Hazard Impacts and Risk Assessment (THIRA), further discusses national and statewide climate change projections and mitigation potential. Because a change in climate has the propensity to affect the severity and extent of the natural hazards addressed in the THIRA, the potential impacts of climate change are addressed in each natural hazard section.

As a state-level agency, WEM does not do bricks-and-mortar mitigation projects; that is a local responsibility. 

However, WEM has the opportunity to influence and encourage local mitigation efforts through training, technical assistance, and resource allocation. To reflect this, WEM has included several new action items in the Mitigation Strategy in Section 3 of the Plan. They encompass a variety of approaches including, but not limited to, the following:
  • Incorporating information on planning for future conditions into trainings
  • Incorporating Climate Resilient Mitigation Activities into the scoring system for project
  • Updating WEM’s local mitigation plan review document to include criteria on the assessment of changing future conditions, including weather patterns.

    4.4.3 Climate Change in Local Plans

    WEM Mitigation staff looked at all approved local and tribal plans from 2011 through 2016 and all plans in process for which a draft has been submitted.
Figure 4.4.3-2: Inclusion of Climate Change in Local Plans by Type of Jurisdiction
Because of the relatively small sample size, it’s difficult to draw meaningful conclusions, but overall it seems that generally over time more plans are starting to include climate change. Additionally, it appears as though countywide plans are the least likely type to include climate change even though quite a few of them do. As more plans in the state are developed and updated, more data will be available to use to paint a more accurate picture...

Figure 4.4.3-3 shows which communities have fully included, mentioned, and not included climate change in their local mitigation plans. Many communities along the Lake Michigan coast have included it. Notably, three counties that did not include a discussion of climate change mentioned it in relation to the impact to lake levels and coastal erosion. The state mitigation plan also describes the impacts climate change could have on coastal hazards.

With the exception of the Fox River Valley in Brown County and the surrounding area, the major population centers and areas of the state experiencing the most growth (Madison/Dane County, southeast counties, St. Croix County, Eau Claire County) are covered by mitigation plans that include climate change.
Many communities around the state are engaging in other planning and activities in preparation for climate change:
  • The Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, the leader in mitigation in the Milwaukee area, commissioned a Climate Change Vulnerability Analysis in 2014. The study looked at likely climate-related impacts through 2050.
  • The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Bureau of Science Services compiled the La Crosse Area Climate Adaptation Study in 2013. The Study involved community engagement and suggested future steps. One of the suggestions was to incorporate adaptation into local mitigation planning.
  • The City of Madison and Dane County are both engaged in climate change planning. Madison developed a Climate Protection Plan that describes climate change and looks at current and potential future impacts the City’s practices have on the environment. The Dane County Climate Change and Emergency Preparedness report, prepared by the Climate Change Action Council, discusses climate risks and identifies adaptation opportunities and strategies to increase resilience. The Action Council is led by Dane County Emergency Management.
    The trend toward including climate change in local plans parallels the direction of the state plan. WEM Mitigation staff will continue to look for ways to inform and support local communities in their planning efforts and will work with communities to understand their concerns and challenges in planning for and implementing long-term, cost-effective mitigation measures.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The corporate interests Scott Walker represents don't care about this, nor do they care about Walker's rural base. Disaster capitalize yields great profits when there are crisis like climate change.

What happens in Wisconsin doesn't matter to the out-of-state and multinational corporations that republicans are beholden to. Climate change in Wisconsin?

For a handful of corporate interests is a profit opportunity that potentially exceeds all definitions of avarice!

We can't win this fight until we better understand how Adam Smith's "invisible hand" of the imaginary free markets is going to whop us in the face.