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Local Researchers Submitting Climate Adaptation Plan To Columbus Officials Today

Dec 18, 2018

Credit bpvcrc.osu.edu

A local task force today is submitting a list of 43 recommendations to Columbus City Council and Mayor Andy Ginther on helping the region prepare for the effects of global climate change.  

Jim Letizia reports.

The task force led by researchers at Ohio State's Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center and more than 75 local stakeholders and experts released a draft of the plan earlier this year.

The plan includes feedback from local residents.  It offers recommendations for adapting to extreme heat, poor air quality, flooding, varied water quality and other effects of climate change.  The report also addresses emergency preparedness and how to protect vulnerable populations. 

The recommendations expand on a report developed in 2016 through a partnership with Ohio State, the City of Columbus and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Among the final recommendations in the Columbus Climate Adaptation Plan are creating a network of buildings where people can cool off during extreme heat, creation of a modernized electricity grid and more public education.  

The task force says Columbus' annual temperatures rose by 2.3 degrees between 1951 and 2012, a rate higher than the global average. Columbus' precipitation has risen by 20 percent during that period.

Several other Ohio cities have adopted similar plans.