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There is consensus among the world’s leading scientists that climate change is among the most significant problems facing the world today and Southeast Florida is one of the most vulnerable areas. Miami-Dade County has been in the forefront of addressing these issues for many years, particularly potential flooding impacts. The Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners and County departments, such as the Regulatory and Economic Resources Department and Miami-Dade Water & Sewer Department, have been implementing policies and initiatives to address climate change, environmental protection and other sustainability issues including energy efficiency and water conservation.
Miami-Dade County has outlined its climate change strategy in GreenPrint as well as in the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Action Plan.
The Regional Climate Action Plan (RCAP) was developed in August 2012 by the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Compact. The plan was developed following a two year collaborative process involving nearly 100 subject matter experts representing public and private sectors, universities, and not-for-profit organizations. The RCAP offers recommendations that provide the common integrated framework for a stronger and more resilient Southeast Florida.
The Compact, which developed the plan, is a partnership formed in 2009.
The Compact is a regional collaborative with Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe and Palm Beach counties, as well as their municipalities and partners, working together in mitigating the causes and adapting to the impacts of climate change. In December 2009, the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners approved a regional climate change compact to develop joint policy positions and legislative policy statements, and develop a Regional Climate Change Action Plan. The Compact also hosts an annual summit which Miami-Dade hosted in 2010 and 2014.
The Sea Level Rise Task Force, formed in July 2013, developed several important recommendations, which are being implemented in Miami-Dade County. The Task Force reviewed relevant data and prior studies and reports regarding the potential impact of sea level rise on public services and facilities, real estate, water and other ecological resources, and property and infrastructure.
To support the implementation of the Task Force's recommendations, the County has issued a series of reports, including these executive summaries:
- Adaptation Action Areas
- Environmentally Endangered Lands
- Enhanced Capital Plan
- Insurance and Risk Management
- Flooding and Saltwater Intrusion
- Climate Change Advisory Task Force
Read all six reports in their entirety (24 MB)
The Miami-Dade Climate Change Advisory Task Force, established in July 2006 through the adoption of Ordinance 06-113, served as an advisory board to the Board of County Commissioners and was charged with identifying potential future climate change impacts to the County, and provided recommendations to mitigate and adapt to climate change.
Several organizations have highlighted the work that is on-going in Miami-Dade County including:
- The White House Council on Environmental Quality – Progress Report of the Interagency Climate Change Adaptation Task Force: In October 2010, the Task Force, released its report outlining recommendations to the President for how Federal Agency policies and programs can better prepare the United States to respond to the impacts of climate change. The report recommends that the Federal Government implement actions to expand and strengthen the Nation's capacity to better understand, prepare for and respond to climate change. Miami-Dade County hosted one of only five major public outreach meetings of the task force.
- Watch the June 23, 2010 meeting webcast of the federal Interagency Climate Change Adaptation Task Force in Miami
- Watch the post-meeting press conference
- Read the White House news release
NOAA Digital Coast Case Study: In 2010, Miami-Dade was featured as a best practice case study -- Adapting to Sea Level Rise in Miami-Dade County, Florida -- as part of NOAA’s Digital Coast initiative and Inundation Toolkit.
ICLEI Climate Adaptation Program – Climate Resilient Communities. Miami-Dade County was the first local government in the nation to use ICLEI's advanced tools and resources to accelerate its preparedness to climate change.
National Case Studies
Miami-Dade County is the subject of several ongoing climate change case studies.
- The White House Council on Environmental Quality – Progress Report of the Interagency Climate Change Adaptation Task Force
- NOAA Digital Coast Case Study – Adapting to Sea Level Rise in Miami-Dade County, Florida
- ICLEI Climate Adaptation Program – Climate Resilient Communities
Climate Change in Miami-Dade
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