February 27, 2014 1 Comment
The following offers a range of tools, videos, and workgroup initiatives of interest to states and water utilities in their collective efforts to become more climate aware and better prepared for extreme weather events. All of the resources below can be accessed here: www.epa.gov/climatereadyutilities
EPA has posted a video online featuring the Waynesboro Water System of Tennessee, which illustrates the system’s efforts to become more climate ready and showcases the adaptive measures implemented to build resilience during extreme events.
Climate Resilience Evaluation and Awareness Tool (CREAT) 2.0 Highlights
In February 2013, EPA and the Southern Nevada Water Authority (SNWA) conducted a CREAT 2.0 assessment of overall risks to the SNWA system and identified opportunities for adaptation. Focus areas included drought, population growth, and short-term and long-term adaptation packages, such as demand management and aquifer recharge. A report documenting the process and lessons learned with SNWA is available now on EPA’s website.
EPA is assisting three utilities to begin the risk assessment process using CREAT. California’s East Bay Municipal Utility District, Texas’s Waco Water Utility and New Jersey’s Camden County Municipal Utility Authority are going through the risk assessment process to identify vulnerabilities based on down-scaled climate data, leading to the development of relevant adaptation options to help reduce climate change impacts. After the assessments are completed, the utilities will share their experiences and insight using the software with the working group [see separate listing below] to update CREAT to version 3.0.
EPA has established a working group of utilities and subject matter experts to identify improvements for the CREAT software and to help develop the next version, CREAT 3.0. Focus areas will include increased user friendliness, a web based foundation to easily access local climate change data, new asset mapping capabilities, enhanced financial components, and updated sea level rise data. The working group will convene over the next year as the software is developed. If you are interested in participating in the working group, please contact CRWU at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Adaptation Strategies Guide
EPA is in the process of updating the Adaptation Strategies Guide, an informational resource available to assist drinking and wastewater utility owners in understanding and addressing climate change risks. The update should reflect revised climate models from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) as well as a greater emphasis on water efficiency, conservation, and demand reduction strategies.
EPA is hosting a series of webinars with the Water Utility Climate Alliance (WUCA) on different planning methods for drinking water and wastewater utility owners and operators. The topics cover scenario planning, robust decision making, threshold analysis, communicating climate risk and more. To view past webinars and register for new sessions, click on the “Training” tab on EPA’s CRWU webpage.