The City of Boston’s updated Climate Action Plan, released by Mayor Marty Walsh in 2015, emphasized the need to take action to increase climate preparedness. Climate Ready Boston is the response to that call to action.
Led by the City of Boston in partnership with the Green Ribbon Commission,Climate Ready Boston is a major step towards our climate preparedness goals. It is a planning initiative that will create solutions to allow Boston to prosper in the face of climate change and the associated risks.
Climate Ready Boston will identify Boston’s vulnerabilities arising in the future from climate change. Issues like sea level rise, increased frequency and intensity of storms, and temperature extremes are examples of likely scenarios that we will have to learn to adapt to. This initiative will produce resiliency strategies designed to be layered together to reduce Boston residents’ physical, social, and environmental vulnerabilities. It will build on and integrate the existing climate action and vulnerability assessments that have been completed by city, state, and regional agencies.
The three major components of Climate Ready Boston are:
Scientific Climate Consensus: UMass Boston is leading this first project component, and has brought together a team of expert climate scientists from across the state (called the Boston Research Advisory Group (BRAG)), to develop a consensus on projections for future climate impacts in the Boston region.
Vulnerability Assessment: The project team will generate a comprehensive vulnerability assessment of Boston’s current risks and vulnerabilities and potential future risks from climate change. The assessment will take a comprehensive look at infrastructure, the built environment, natural systems, social vulnerability, and regional assets.
Resiliency Initiatives: The project team will identify resiliency focus areas-- areas where resiliency actions are not currently being taken and should be prioritized by the City. The team will then develop a set of recommended resiliency initiatives for each area. The resiliency initiatives are likely to include a combination of strategies and policies for innovative coastal protection, infrastructure hardening, built environment adaptation, and community resilience.
Two key advisory groups are working alongside the City to ensure that Climate Ready Boston is on the right track. The Infrastructure Advisory Group is a coalition of city, state, and private sector agencies responsible for the resiliency of the city’s infrastructure and environmental systems. We are also working with the City’s Chief Resilience Officer, Dr. Martin, to convene a community resiliency advisory group to provide feedback on neighborhood priorities.
Stay tuned to Greenovate for updates about Climate Ready Boston and the results of the assessments and studies, and an upcoming Climate Ready Boston website!