DATE: October 24, 2012
MEDIA CONTACT: Dr. Jennifer Jurado, Director
Broward County Natural Resources Planning and Management Division
The Broward County Board of County Commissioners approved the Regional Climate Action Plan, a major deliverable under the four-County Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact (Compact) on Tuesday, October 23. The Compact was adopted in January 2010 by Broward, Palm Beach, Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties who committed to partner in addressing the regional challenges posed by climate change.
The Regional Climate Action Plan represents the culmination of more than three years of technical and planning processes and the support of diverse agencies and stakeholders from across the region. It provides a foundation for building community resilience through concerted actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to regional and local impacts of a changing climate. The plan’s recommendations also aim to protect the region’s unique assets and support economic development, while fostering healthy, livable communities.
Southeast Florida is considered one of the most vulnerable areas to climate change and sea
level rise. “With more than 5.6 million people represented by the four counties in the Compact, more than the population of 30 U.S. states, we have an opportunity to demonstrate extraordinary leadership in our efforts to build community resilience, for the benefit of our residents and businesses,” said Vice Mayor Kristin Jacobs. An earlier champion for the Compact and climate initiatives in Broward County, Vice Mayor Jacobs continued, “Resilience will require that all planning efforts and public expenditures reflect proper consideration of both historic and future conditions, and that infrastructure is located and designed so as to reduce risk and future economic losses."
Full implementation will require voluntary participation by many agencies and jurisdictions. Many of the recommendations build upon best practices sprinkled throughout our region, such as regional collaboration in transportation planning and land use criteria that foster walkable and healthy communities. Others delve into “new” frontiers in calling for the integration of climate change into planning and decision-making processes in ways that no local government has yet implemented.
Heralded as a model for regional collaboration and policy making, the Compact’s Regional Climate Action Plan serves as a template for local governments, in Broward and beyond, to create policies and practices that build stronger and more resilient communities for today and tomorrow.