SCCOG Seeking Public Comments on Draft Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan:
While southeastern Connecticut has enjoyed a period of relative calm over the last five years, the tropical systems of 2021 (Elsa, Fred, Henri, and Ida) and the coastal storm of December 23, 2022 were strong reminders of the risks posed by natural disasters. The region’s communities–twenty-two towns, cities, and boroughs, and two federally recognized tribal governments–have shared in the development and adoption of a natural hazard mitigation plan for two decades, with updates incorporated every five years. The region’s communities again worked with the Southeastern Connecticut Council of Governments (SCCOG) to update the plan, and this time the challenges associated with climate change were incorporated directly into the plan to produce a “Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan” for southeastern Connecticut.
The Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan for southeastern Connecticut outlines sets of actions that can be taken to reduce losses of property and life due to natural disasters like floods, severe wind events, winter storms, wildfires, droughts, and extreme heat events made worse by climate change, as well as hazards such as earthquakes that are not affected by climate change. This is the first edition of the region’s plan to directly include droughts and extreme heat. Many of the proposed actions listed in the plan are meant to ensure that each of the towns, cities, boroughs, and tribes in the region have reasonable access to shelters, cooling centers, and other critical facilities needed before, during, and after severe weather or heat events.
The hazard mitigation and climate adaptation planning effort leveraged close coordination with the Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation (CIRCA), which is located nearby at UConn’s Avery Point Campus. CIRCA has expanded its “Resilient Connecticut” program from a narrow pilot region to the entire state, with a strong focus in southeastern Connecticut. New flood and extreme heat vulnerability mapping was developed by CIRCA and is included in the plan.
The Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan for southeastern Connecticut will continue to make the region’s communities eligible for seeking hazard mitigation assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the State of Connecticut.
The Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan for southeastern Connecticut is available for review at www.seccog.org/resil-haz.
Comments and questions regarding the Hazard Mitigation and Climate Adaptation Plan for southeastern Connecticut may be sent directly to SCCOG at email@example.com. Public comments regarding the draft will be received until March 31, 2023. Additional comments about natural hazard mitigation and climate adaptation may be provided to SCCOG at the same email address during plan implementation, over the life of the plan.
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