According to the White House Council on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, the cost of extreme weather to the US Federal Government has totaled over $357 billion over the past decade, and climate change is expected to increase this number significantly. A recent report released by the White House noted, “Climate change impacts will continue to manifest for a long time to come, and we have more work to do to ensure that we prepare, we adapt, and we respond and recover quickly.” Based on this projection, communities will need to develop resiliency strategies to reduce the impacts of these events, and build their capacity to respond.
Today, the White House’s Office of Science & Technology Policy (OSTP) announced the launch of Resilience Dialogues, a new beta online platform where communities can find the tools to support their climate resilience needs. Climate CoLab is pleased to have provided the CoLab platform for the pilot and beta version of this service, and Laur Hesse Fisher serves on the Resilience Dialogues leadership team. These interactive tools include online discussions and teleconferences supported by professional facilitators to help communities develop their strategies. The collaboration is coordinated by the U.S. Global Change Research Program and the American Geophysical Union’s Thriving Earth Exchange, with support from the Kresge Foundation for the beta version. The project builds on federal efforts such as the Climate Data Initiative, Climate Resilience Toolkit, and the National Climate Assessment, to deliver actionable and usable climate information to communities across the United States.
Resilience Dialogues provides a way for leadership to connect with scientists, practitioners, and other experts in facilitated, tailored discussions. It works as a catalyst to climate resiliency by drawing on the efforts of community leadership and national experts, who have come together to identify relevant information for specific areas. This past spring, a pilot project was launched with five communities in the United States: 1) Coral Gables, FL; 2) Dubuque, IA; 3) Knoxville, TN; 4) Minneapolis, MN; and the 5) Kansas City Metro Area, MO.
Experts from 22 different organizations helped areas define their own local resiliency strategies, focused on the specific challenges each community faces. The beta edition works to build on the successes of the pilot program to give more communities access to online tools in support of building resilience.
For the moment, Resilience Dialogues will be available to a number of community-based networks, with the eventual goal of expanding the service to all communities interested in increasing climate resiliency. Communities are welcome to reach out to the Resilience Dialogues team if they are interested in participating. See how you can start a dialogue and make a difference for your community!
To learn more: