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Palm Beach County launches climate risk assessment, survey

First community conversation to be held July 11 at Belle Glade Library and Civic Center
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Posted at 3:05 PM, Jul 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-07 20:46:53-04

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Palm Beach County officials announced Friday they are launching a countywide Climate Risk Assessment to assess threats due to climate change. This includes extreme heat, agricultural impacts, wildfires and extreme flooding events.

Officials said they are working to develop a resiliency action plan to combat the effects of climate change.

The county had already initiated efforts to identify and evaluate future climate change impacts on important assets. However, officials said this project will formalize that process across all of Palm Beach County.

"Palm Beach County is proactively addressing the impacts of climate change, including extreme heat, unpredictable rainfall, stormwater flooding, stronger storms and sea level rise. This project is the next phase of our work," Palm Beach County Chief Resilience Officer Megan Houston said. "We must deliberately work to ensure that all our community members are prepared for and thrive in the face of a changing climate."

The first community conversation for the project will be held on July 11 at the Belle Glade Library and Civic Center located at 725 Northwest Fourth Street in Belle Glade from 6-7:30 p.m.

For those who cannot attend the workshop in Belle Glade, there will be an in-person viewing gathering at South Bay City Hall located at 335 Southwest Second Avenue in South Bay.

The purpose of the meeting is to explain the project's goals and outcomes and solicit community feedback.
Members of the community can register for the meeting by clicking here.

County officials said the Climate Risk Assessment will include public outreach meetings and community engagement throughout the county. These meetings will help with data collection, flood mapping, and modeling, evaluation of critical assets and suggested updates to Palm Beach County policies.

The county has also launched a survey to gather feedback from the community on the impacts of flooding and climate change. The survey results will help the county prioritize infrastructure improvements, policies and community programs.

All county residents are invited to complete a survey by clicking here.

Officials said the project's outcome will be a Climate Change Risk Assessment and Resilience Action Plan that will make the county eligible for infrastructure grants including the Resilient Florida Grant Program, of which there was more more than $1.5 billion in grants in the past three years.