How to address climate locally? These 6 places have plans

Author

Daniel Cusick

Source(s)
Environment & Energy Publishing

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Summer heat is baking Richmond’s poorest neighborhoods, most of which are predominantly Black and Hispanic. So Richmond, with a population of 227,000, is adapting to climate disasters — mostly extreme heat, floods and droughts — with an eye toward environmental justice.

Under its “RVAgreen 2050” planning effort, the city launched a “Climate Equity Index” that allows users to use digital maps to compare areas with high climate risk and vulnerability to those with high poverty, racial disparity, and poor health and wellness outcomes.

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Environmental advocates and the state of New Jersey are responding by constructing one of the longest “living shoreline” projects in the country. Crews last month began submerging the first of 168 galvanized steel cages packed with rocks and oyster shells off Lacey Township just south of the city of Toms River with hopes of reviving a 12,000-acre oyster habitat. For human inhabitants, high-tide flooding has become routine with even minor storms.

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Under a March 2020 ballot initiative, 71 percent of Marin County voters approved a “parcel tax” under what’s known as Measure C. The 10-cent-per-square-foot tax is expected to generate more than $19 million annually to mitigate wildfire risk for a quarter-million people in Marin County just north of San Francisco.

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