California Climate Assessment Provides Tools to Support Responses to Climate Impacts
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The Fourth Assessment’s research scales down models to fill information gaps and support decisions at the local, regional and state levels.

The assessment funded the development and enhancement of several tools and resources to support climate action.

The assessment comes ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit, which will provide the opportunity for representatives from subnational governments, businesses and civil society to showcase climate actions.

27 August 2018: Two­-thirds of Southern California’s beaches could disappear and the average area burned by wildfires could double by 2100, according to California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment, which highlights new science on the impacts of climate change and provides various planning tools to support the response to them.

The assessment, which is a compilation of original climate research, includes 13 summary reports on climate change impacts to help prepare the state for more severe wildfires, more frequent and longer droughts, rising sea levels, increased flooding, coastal erosion and extreme heat events. The summary reports address California as a whole, California’s coast and ocean, tribal and indigenous communities within California, climate justice and different regions within California. The assessment also includes 44 reports on agriculture, energy, biodiversity, forests and wildfire, governance, oceans and coasts, projects, data sets and tools, public health and water. The assessment’s research scales down models to fill information gaps and support decisions at the local, regional and state levels.

California’s climate change assessments provide the scientific foundation for understanding climate-­related vulnerability at the local scale and informing resilience actions.

The Fourth Assessment funded the development and enhancement of several tools and resources to support climate action:

  • Cal-Adapt, which is California’s portal for providing access to the climate projections underpinning the Assessment and enabling data download and visualizations of climate scenarios at the local level and wildfire projections for the state;
  • The California Heat Assessment Tool (CHAT or Cal-Heat), which aims to inform planning efforts of local public health officials, provide health-informed heat thresholds for communities across California, and examine the ways in which the frequency and severity of local heat waves are expected to change over time as a result of climate change;
  • An expansion of the US Coast Guard Coastal Storm Modeling System (USGS CoSMoS), which projects complex coastal dynamics in a range of coastal flooding scenarios;
  • Expanded coverage of the USGS HERA web tool, which links USGS CoSMoS flood projections to socioeconomic impacts on coastal communities;
  • The Adaptation Capability Advancement Toolkit (Adapt-CA), which helps local governments overcome organizational barriers so that they can implement climate change adaptation measures; and
  • The California Emergency Response Infrastructure Climate Vulnerability Tool (CERI-Climate), which is a decision-support tool that helps evaluate the risk to facilities that are critical to the state’s ability to respond to disasters, including floods and wildfires, and how climate change may affect these risks.

California’s climate change assessments provide the scientific foundation for understanding climate-related vulnerability at the local scale and informing resilience actions as well as state policies, plans, programmes and guidance to promote effective and integrated climate action.

The assessment comes ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS), which will take place from 12-14 September 2018, in San Francisco, US, and provide the opportunity for representatives from subnational governments, businesses and civil society to showcase climate actions. [Fourth Assessment Online Tools] [California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment Website] [GCAS Press Release]


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