Globally, the world has now reached a point for which it is not possible to avoid the impacts of climate change. As global emissions continue to climb, the most extreme climate change models are now generally accepted as the most likely scenario. In some circumstances they are now considered to be conservative projections. The United States is home to millions of unique biome’s that will all be impacted by climate change differently, making the need to develop adaptation and resiliency plans at the local level exceptionally important. While no plan can comprehensively address all the ways in which climate change will impact the human species and our environments, this plan has focused on four key areas that the City of Medford can strategically invest in to equitably mitigate the effects of climate change.
Our process for developing the Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Plan is to first identify our city-wide vulnerabilities. Our vulnerabilities report(PDF, 3MB) relies on an existing body of research to identify how natural systems in the Rogue Valley may change, and the corresponding impacts of those changes on the regional economy, built environment, public health, and community. While we are no longer able to stop the effects of climate change, strategically spending to improve resiliency and adaptation can help mitigate the effects of climate change, protecting quality of life. Research to understand our vulnerabilities will be ongoing, as new data becomes available.
The second part of this plan will identify key strategies for improving resiliency and adaptation. The Medford Planning Department will work closely with the Climate Change Adaptation and Resiliency Plan Committee and community members to identify and develop climate change solutions. Any meaningful response, while lead by the City of Medford, must be supported by community members and the private sector to succeed. Regional opportunities to partner in addressing concerns related to climate change will be explored and pursued wherever possible.
To learn more about how specific sectors are being impacted and what actions we can take to improve resiliency, please join us for our CCARP Webinar Series on the fourth Thursday of each month.