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May 15, 2018 > Climate project garners award

Climate project garners award

Submitted By Mar’a Leticia G—mez/Laurel Anderson

Over the next century, increasing atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations (GHG) are expected to cause a variety of changes to local climate conditions in Santa Clara County, including sea level rise and storm surges near the San Francisco Bay; increased riverine flooding; and more frequent, higher temperatures leading to extreme heat events and wildfires, particularly inland. These climate variables (and their associated threats) are projected to impact critical assets throughout the county, including regionally significant highways, water and wastewater treatment plants, electricity substations, technology campuses, employment centers, agriculture, homes, vulnerable populations and ecosystems.

The County of Santa Clara was awarded the National Association of Counties (NACo) 2018 Achievement Award for its program ÔSilicon Valley 2.0: Decision-making Tools for Climate Adaptation and Resilience.Õ NACo awards honor innovative, effective county government programs.

ÒThis is an honor that could not be achieved without the California Strategic Growth CouncilÕs funding and all the many partners who contributed to the project and continue to collaborate with the County to advance climate defense. The County wants to gratefully acknowledge everyone involved in this shared effort for their significant contributions of time and expertise,Ó said Susan Gilbert-Miller, Director, County of Santa Clara Office of Sustainability.

The award, in the category of ÔCounty Resiliency: Infrastructure, Energy and Sustainability,Õ recognizes the Silicon Valley 2.0 Project. SV20, as the project is known, is a regional effort to create risk-based decision-making tools to assist with climate adaptation and resilience planning, and to minimize the anticipated impacts of climate change within Santa Clara County (including 15 cities and the countyÕs unincorporated areas). SV20 was designed and managed by the County of Santa Clara Office of Sustainability and funded by the California Strategic Growth Council.

ÒThe County is delighted that NACo has recognized our region as national leaders in addressing climate change. Our collaborative model is one that other counties can adopt to plan for their climate preparedness efforts,Ó said Sylvia Gallegos, Deputy County Executive.

Started in 1970, NACoÕs annual Achievement Awards program is designed to recognize county government innovations. Each nominee is judged on its own merits and not against other applications received.

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