Local governments are addressing the issue of climate-intensified flooding, as well as wildfire and heat risks, through a combination of:
1) Climate change mitigation, or reducing the emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases in our atmosphere; and
2) Climate change adaptation, or responding to climate change that’s already in the pipeline.
The City of San Diego’s 2022 Climate Action Plan aims for net zero emissions by 2035 and carbon neutrality by 2045 through the decarbonization of buildings, the expansion of green transportation infrastructure, the creation of a more sustainable food system, and the sequestration of carbon. The City lays out its adaptation plan, on the other hand, in Climate Resilient SD. This document recommends community outreach, emergency trainings on potential climate change hazards, and incentives for climate-resilient infrastructure, as well as emergency hubs for shade, food, shelter, and healthcare. In terms of flooding, more funding is needed to improve aging drainage systems. Doing so would require a voted-in measure.
Live in Encinitas or unincorporated San Diego County? The City of Encinitas’ updated Climate Action Plan is available here; it tracks its progress here. You can also read the updated 2024 County of San Diego Climate Action Plan here and see its progress here.
Would you like to get involved in climate change mitigation and adaptation? Here are some opportunities.
- (City of San Diego only) Consider signing onto the petition to put a measure for improved public transit on the November ballot.
- Become a member of the San Diego Food System Alliance for opportunities to advocate for a more sustainable and equitable food system in our region. (Membership is free.)
- Are you a farmer or rancher? Learn about composting for water retention and climate resilience at our five-week course beginning February 24th (unincorporated county residents only.) Not an unincorporated county resident, or aren’t free that day? Visit the Carbon Sink Demonstration Farm in Pauma Valley to learn how to sink and store carbon on your land.
- Are you a solar developer? What about a representative of a school, a community-based organization, or a government entity? San Diego Community Power is looking for all of the above to participate in their Solar for Our Communities program.
- Are you a business owner? Join Business For Good San Diego‘s Environmental Health Committee to push for climate mitigation policy.
- Want to see an eco-friendly measure on the November ballot that there isn’t a petition for yet? Learn to write your own here.
- Volunteer with 2-1-1 San Diego to connect people with the resources they need during a disaster scenario.
- Join San Diego County CERT to learn how to put out small fires and organize spontaneous volunteers, as well as basic search and rescue and basic medical aid.
- Volunteer with CAL FIRE to lead fire prevention outreach or act as a specialist in administration, communications, or firefighting.
- Are you a medical professional? Consider volunteering with the Southern California Red Cross or the Administration for Strategic Preparedness & Response Medical Reserve Corps (MRC.)