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|What are public
agencies in the region doing to develop adaptations to
a changing climate?
Some public agencies in the New York tri-state metropolitan
region have begun planning to help the region adapt
to the impacts of climate change. This includes considering
environmental, human health, water management, and
infrastructure issues associated with a changing
Policies Developed by Public Agencies in Response to Climate Change
Many public agencies in the New York metropolitan
region are starting to examine the role of adaptation
in their programs. Public agencies at all levels
(national, regional, state, county, metropolitan,
and city) have begun to investigate plans or actions
for adaptation to climate change. Much of what is
happening now is focused on research and risk assessment.
The research deals with a range of topics including
human health, water management, and protection of
the built and natural environment. Some examples
of agency activities are outlined below.
- The Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) carries
out numerous projects around the New York metropolitan
region that aim to counteract beach erosion, reduce
flood damage, and restore natural wetlands and estuaries,
some of which explicitly include climate change.
The Fire Island Inlet to Montauk Point Reformulation
Study, for example, includes sea-level rise due to
climate change in their models of future conditions.
- The New England States and Eastern Canadian
Provinces created a Climate Change Action Plan which
provides plans for the reduction of and/or adaptation
to negative social, economic and environmental impacts
of climate change. They outline the human-constructed
infrastructure and natural resources that will be
affected by regional climate change and make recommendations
for assessments of damage and adaptations that will
not increase greenhouse gas emissions further.
- The United States Forest Service Research
and Development Division with the New Jersey Forestry
Service have added $610,000 to FY 2005 budget to
focus on global climate change. These resources will
fund improved observations of forest carbon stocks
and flows, analysis and prediction of the likely
effects of climate change on forest services, and
development of management practices to both mitigate
and adapt to expected climate change.
- Agencies in both New Jersey and New York
have also created mandates or plans for adaptation
to climate change. For example, the Division of Coastal
Resources of the New York State Department of State
and the New York State Department of Environmental
Conservation (NYSDEC) Division of Wildlife and Marine
Resources Bureau of Marine Resources released The
New York State Salt Marsh Restoration and Monitoring
Guidelines, which notes that sea-level rise due to
global climate change threatens salt marshes. They
suggest identifying and protecting low-lying areas
to allow future landward migration of salt marshes.
They describe methods of restoration that make wetlands
more resilient to both sea level rise and natural
disturbances. Also in New York State, the Long Island
Sound Coastal Management Program of the Department
of State created Executive Law §913, which states
that developers must consider sea-level rise when
siting and designing projects involving substantial
Center for Clean Air Policy (2001). The New York
Greenhouse Gas Task Force.
Executive Office of Governor
John G. Rowland (2004). Connecticut Climate
Change: Fact Sheet.
New England States and Eastern Canadian Provinces
(2001) Regional Climate Change
Action Plan. http://www.ctclimatechange.com/neg_rept.html
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
(2003). Greenhouse Gas and
Climate Change Activities. http://www.state.nj.us/dep/dsr/gcc/gcc.htm
New York State Department of State and the New
York State Department of
Environmental Conservation (2000). The New York
State Salt Marsh Restoration
and Monitoring Guidelines. http://www.nyswaterfronts.com/downloads/pdfs/saltmarsh.pdf
New York State Department of State (1999). Long
Island Sound Coastal Policies.
United States Army Corps of Engineers (2004).
Fire Island Inlet to Montauk Point
Reformulation Study. http://www.nan.usace.army.mil/fimp/reform.htm
United States Forest Service Research and
Development Division (2004). New Jersey.
Print version (factsheet pdf)
||File last modified: 29 March 2005
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