Responses to Climate Change Program
The hydrologic and coastal processes underlying water resources management are very sensitive to changes in climate and weather. The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has a compelling need to understand and adapt to climate change and variability because our Civil Works Program and associated water resources infrastructure represent a tremendous Federal investment that supports public safety and local and national economic growth. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is mainstreaming climate change adaptation across activities to enhance the resilience of our Nation's water-resources infrastructure, and to reduce our vulnerabilities to the effects of climate change. We have developed a governance structure to support mainstreaming adaptation by establishing an overarching USACE Climate Change Adaptation Policy Statement and a Climate Change Adaptation Steering Council.
We are serious about planning and implementing climate change adaptation in accordance with our overarching Climate Change Adaptation policy Statement. Our senior leadership has and will continue to stress the importance of meeting the challenges to water resources management posed by climate change — and the opportunities as well. We understand that effective climate adaptation and mitigation must be integrated throughout the project life-cycle, and we intend to develop the policies, methods and technologies to do so. We must anticipate surprise and unexpected events, both natural and socioeconomic, and be able to respond effectively in a timely manner.
One way that USACE is improving our knowledge about climate change impacts and adaptation is by conducting targeted pilot studies to test new ideas and develop information needed to develop policy and guidance. Through these pilots, USACE is developing and testing alternative adaptation strategies to achieve specific business management decisions; identify new policies, methods, and tools to support adaptation for similar cases; learn how to incorporate new and changing climate information throughout the project lifecycle; develop, test, and improve an agency level adaptation implementation framework; and to implement lessons learned. Each of these pilot studies addresses a central question that will help guide us as we develop policy and guidance to mainstream adaptation.
Taken together, however, the pilot projects are providing a body of knowledge and tested methods that will be the foundation of how USACE successfully adapts to climate change, thereby increasing our resilience to, and decreasing our vulnerability from, the effects of changing climate. In fall 2012, we compiled fact sheets on our pilots. This information can be reached by one of the links below.
Low-resolution version (for reading) (pdf, 3.5 MB)
High-resolution version (for printing) (pdf, 14.73 MB)
revised 2 October 2012