Storm Surge, Wind and Coastal Flooding
Is Your Newport Neighborhood Ready?
Each day we read of new data and mapping that points to flooding, drought and storms. There is no longer any reason to argue over the science. Rhode Islanders want their government to provide clear guidance and standards for the use of scientific and technical information to prepare for these problems using practical, cost effective solutions.
As a Newport resident, I am particularly concerned about reducing risks and bringing resources for resiliency efforts to our seaside city.
This year the RI House of Representatives made State history when it passed Rhode Island’s first comprehensive climate change bill. The Resilient Rhode Island Act is set to reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions while establishing a structure for State leadership on climate resilience, preparation and adaptation.
Here are some key facets of the climate change bill:
- The act makes permanent Governor Chafee’s Executive Climate Change Council, which has met biweekly since February to compile a detailed roadmap for State action on climate.
- The Council will conduct vulnerability assessments throughout the State, advance understanding of how to adapt to the effects of climate change, and identify and communicate adaptation strategies to Rhode Islanders.
- The act establishes an advisory board to engage the public with the executive Council of agency directors and to assist them in outreach. It creates a science and technical advisory board to ensure the State’s efforts are based on the latest research on climate and best practices in building community resilience.
- The bill ensures that State agencies incorporate climate preparedness in their planning by giving them the power to consider the impacts of climate change, develop short and long term greenhouse gas emissions reductions plans, and support efforts to expand RI’s green economy and infrastructure.
I will work with State Government to provide further guidance to municipalities for managing our infrastructure, storm water and waste water management, emergency preparedness, energy and communication systems.
We can accelerate vulnerability assessment and increase our communication statewide in a partnership based strategy with State and local governments, the private sector and neighborhoods throughout Rhode Island.