Why We Need to Start Planning for Climate Change — Now

May 9, 2011
Seattle from the air. Photo by flickr user Tony Cyphert

On May 4 SPUR released a major report, "Climate Change Hits Home," that lays out what the Bay Area must do to start preparing for the coming effects of climate change. This project, a multi-year effort by a team of top climate scientists and government leaders, represents a turning point for SPUR. We have long worked to stop climate change, but now we are also addressing the reality that some climate change is inevitable, despite our best efforts. Even if we stopped producing greenhouse gases tomorrow, emissions already in the air would continue to warm the atmosphere.

By 2050, we'll have nearly eight times as many dangerously hot days as we did in the 20th century. Sea levels are expected to rise 55 inches by 2100. And we need to start readying our railroads, highways, water supply, public health infrastructure and energy grid for the changes to come. Ours is the first report to map out specific actions that Bay Area governments need to take to protect our systems.

News of the report has appeared on KQED radio, KGO and KRON TV and in the San Francisco Chronicle, The Bay Citizen and the San Francisco Examiner. We hope local government agencies will give our recommendations the same degree of attention.


Read the full report>>

Listen to report author Laura Tam on KQED>>