h/t TriplePundit – FEMA, the US Federal Emergency Management Agency, has issued draft guidance which demands that states include an assessment of climate risk in their 5 year disaster plan, or risk losing federal funding.
According to the FEMA draft guidance;
“Key concepts under consideration include strengthening specific requirements for:
…assessing future risk in light of a changing climate and changes in land use and development. This will ensure that the mitigation strategy addresses risks and takes into consideration possible future conditions in order to identify, prioritize, and implement actions to increase statewide resilience;
supporting states in fulfilling mitigation commitments, including FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance grants management performance, throughout the five-year plan approval period. FEMA seeks opportunities to build and maintain mitigation capabilities and advance hazard mitigation proactively during plan implementation, and not solely at plan update and review;
clarifying that “formally adopted by the state” means plan adoption by the highest elected official to reflect the importance of plan implementation as a means to demonstrate risk reduction as a statewide priority;
coordinating and integrating the mitigation planning process with the whole community, including agencies and stakeholders with mitigation capabilities that are responsible for economic development; land use and development; housing; infrastructure; natural and cultural resource management; and health and human services. Engaging agencies and stakeholders with data and authority early in the planning process facilitates both successful plan development and implementation.”
The section on hazard assessment contains the following injunction;
“The risk assessment must provide a summary of the probability of future hazard events that includes projected changes in occurrences for each natural hazard in terms of location, extent, intensity, frequency, and/or duration. Probability must include considerations of changing future conditions, including the effects of climate change on the identified hazards.”
There is a threat of funding sanction against states which fail to fulfil the key requirements, the first of which is an assessment of the risk of “future climate change”;
“If FEMA determines that the State is not maintaining the mitigation plan and, therefore, not meeting mitigation commitments, FEMA may take corrective action, such as revoking or suspending the plan approval status. Corrective action may impact eligibility for certain FEMA assistance until such time as FEMA determines that the plan meets the requirements and restores plan approval status.”
With the threat of a lethal global Ebola pandemic looming, and an elevated risk of a repeat this year of last year’s brutal winter, if Great Lakes temperatures are any guide http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/10/14/water-temperature-of-the-great-lakes-is-over-6-degrees-colder-than-normal/ , it’s a comfort to know that Federal agencies have prioritised states devoting time and resources, to determining what they will do if the world warms a little.
Thanks to Eric Worrall for this story.
On the face of it, this seems to me to be little more than blackmail.