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Title: Vulnerability Assessments and Resilience Planning at Federal Facilities. Preliminary Synthesis of Project

U.S. government agencies are now directed to assess the vulnerability of their operations and facilities to climate change and to develop adaptation plans to increase their resilience. Specific guidance on methods is still evolving based on the many different available frameworks. Agencies have been experimenting with these frameworks and approaches. This technical paper synthesizes lessons and insights from a series of research case studies conducted by the investigators at facilities of the U.S. Department of Energy and the Department of Defense. The purpose of the paper is to solicit comments and feedback from interested program managers and analysts before final conclusions are published. The paper describes the characteristics of a systematic process for prioritizing needs for adaptation planning at individual facilities and examines requirements and methods needed. It then suggests a framework of steps for vulnerability assessments at Federal facilities and elaborates on three sets of methods required for assessments, regardless of the detailed framework used. In a concluding section, the paper suggests a roadmap to further develop methods to support agencies in preparing for climate change. The case studies point to several preliminary conclusions; (1) Vulnerability assessments are needed to translate potential changes in climate exposure to estimates ofmore » impacts and evaluation of their significance for operations and mission attainment, in other words into information that is related to and useful in ongoing planning, management, and decision-making processes; (2) To increase the relevance and utility of vulnerability assessments to site personnel, the assessment process needs to emphasize the characteristics of the site infrastructure, not just climate change; (3) A multi-tiered framework that includes screening, vulnerability assessments at the most vulnerable installations, and adaptation design will efficiently target high-risk sites and infrastructure; (4) Vulnerability assessments can be connected to efforts to improve facility resilience to motivate participation; and (5) Efficient, scalable methods for vulnerability assessment can be developed, but additional case studies and evaluation are required.« less
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [3] ;  [1]
  1. Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL)/Univ. of Maryland, College Park, MD (United States). Joint Global Change Research Inst.
  2. Univ. of Maryland, College Park, MD (United States)
  3. James Madison Univ., Harrisonburg, VA (United States)
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Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States