“Mayors are incentivized on providing safety, economic security, growth and a healthy environment for people,” says Seth Schultz. Not all C40 mayors may be direct advocates of the environment, but they’re all advocates of providing these crucial assurances to their cities, he says, and this report suggests that investing in green infrastructure is a way to do that.
Climate Change Adaptation
“Man-made infrastructure used to be the default for most discussions about protecting at-risk communities. Now, science is showing us that natural defenses like dunes, wetlands, mussel beds, forests and oyster reefs can help to keep us safe from future disasters by absorbing floodwaters, reducing wave energy and helping defend against storm surges, with the added benefits of increasing wildlife habitat, absorbing carbon pollution that is the cause of climate change, and making our city more aesthetically pleasing and livable,” stated Bill Ulfelder.
“Regardless of the cause, it’s clear that natural catastrophes
are a major issue for Canada. With no sign that things
are going to be getting any better, it’s prudent for businesses
and policy-makers to start thinking of the long term-implications,
and place a larger emphasis on catastrophes when
making investment decisions,” wrote Craig Alexander, TD Economics.
Climate Change Adaptation in Phoenix: “Create green infrastructure to capture rainwater,” says Lyssa Hall
“We are dealing with a two decade drought and at the same time flooding – due to the over pavement and the loss of our natural wash system. In that challenge there is an opportunity to create green infrastructure to capture rainwater to support the creation of tree lined streets and green spaces that support a healthier and more liveable Phoenix. To quote Sir Winston Churchill, ‘Never let a crisis go to waste’,” stated Lyssa Hall.
Adapt to a Changing Climate: “Prioritize alternate ways of managing stormwater,” says editorial in Detroit Free Press after historic 24-hour rainfall
“One of the really, really big problems, in my estimation, is the state has cut back on the funding to local units of government. That has had a major effect on ability to invest and upgrade infrastructure systems,” said Steven Wright.
Preparing for Climate Change in the Chicago Region and Beyond: “Rain Ready” Initiative Promotes Better Rainwater Management
“Through our years of research and advocacy on water management issues, we realized that there was something of a disconnect between information and action. Rain Ready seeks to close that gap by making it easier for homeowners, businesses, and government leaders to create Rain Ready plans,” said Harriet Festing. The Rain Ready website features videos and how-to factsheets that show rain readiness in action.
“The skills and resources needed for green infrastructure success cross many organizational boundaries — public and private, for-profit and non-profit, thinkers and doers. Urban resilience solutions must look across built infrastructure, green infrastructure and community-based adaptations rooted in social change. What will crystallize all of these best practices into common practice is the development of partnership templates and tools that link into a replicable model,” writes Jad Dayley.
“For the first time, water efficiency, green infrastructure (such as green roofs and rain gardens), and other climate-resilient projects will be eligible for financing from a multi-billion-dollar state clean water fund, instead of having to rely on smaller grants. Their approach is a model for other states seeking to build sustainable, resilient communities that are prepared to combat climate change,” wrote Peter Lehner.
Flooding in Chicago Region: “Everything is to blame when ~10% of annual rain falls in 6 hours,” observed Deborah Shore, Commissioner
“Why did streets fill up and why did water back up into basements? Everything is to blame. No municipal system of sewer pipes can handle that much rain in such a short period of time. Moreover, the Chicago and metropolitan area is flat and we’ve removed the land’s ability to absorb the rain that falls upon it,” wrote Deborah Shore.
US Conference of Mayors calls on cities to use natural solutions to fight the effects of climate change
Mayors are looking for alternatives to traditional infrastructure projects that will be cost-effective and provide residents with amenities. “What’s so significant is that there was a unanimous vote on an issue that can be so divisive. When you peel away the high-level arguments and deal with the ground-level issues everyone just rolls up their sleeves and gets to work,” said Laura Huffman.