Climate Change, Sustainability, and Resilience
Sustainable and resilient provision of water – under both routine conditions and following extreme events – is a key societal and infrastructure need. Crises related to fires in the western US, to hurricane impacts (e.g., Maria in Puerto Rico; Harvey in Houston), and to other acute events or societal and biophysical changes reveal how water services can be impacted and devastate communities. Seeking greater sustainability and resilience – in the face of climate change (floods, hurricanes, drought, fire), aging infrastructure, cybersecurity needs, pandemics, economic disruptions, and population growth – necessitates changes in water management. Overcoming these interconnected and complex water management challenges is a daunting task. There is increased urgency to modernize and integrate water management practices, but for most communities (especially, small communities), management remains ad hoc and siloed.
Participants will explore Smart One Water as a pathway towards transformation for a holistic climate response, paying particular attention to culture shifts that minimize unintended consequences and maximize progress toward water equity, climate justice, community resilience, and a circular economy. This session will leave participants with a better understanding of what cultivating climate action looks like and how we can shape water processes and investments for both people and the planet.
Food for Thought!
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Question # 1
Sustainability and resilience of water services is increasingly impacted by a number of biophysical, economic, and societal stresses. How can those stresses be best identified, prioritized, and cost-effectively managed?
Question # 2
How will the Smart One Water approach and its technology-enabled coordination help provide for more sustainable and resilient water services?
Question # 3
How can we act now, locally (i.e., even in the absence of national, regional, or state policy), given the value proposition offered by the Smart One Water approach? For example, water reuse, water storage, flood management, have been identified as essential community needs. What are barriers for their local implementations, and how can those barriers be overcome through a Smart One Water approach?