Assembly committee passes Wieckowski's climate adaptation bill

SB 262 creates the California Council for Climate Adaptation and Resiliency

June 11, 2018

SACRAMENTO – The California Assembly Natural Resources Committee overwhelmingly passed a bill by Senator Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) today to create the California Council for Adaptation and Resiliency (CCAR) to maintain a climate adaptation clearinghouse, provide technical and scientific support to local, regional and state agencies, and to handle various climate adaptation resiliency and financing documents. 

SB 262 builds on legislation authored by Wieckowski in 2015 that created the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program (ICARP).  It provides a permanent structure in the Office of Planning Resources for state, local, and regional collaboration on climate adaptation.

“Comprehensive adaptation and resiliency actions are crucial to protect California from the unavoidable impacts of climate change on our environment and our infrastructure,” said Wieckowski, the chair of the Senate Environmental Quality Committee. “Many scientific forecasts on climate change are finding the effects could be more devastating than previous estimates. Whether it is rising sea levels, more extreme weather events, or vector borne diseases, adapting to these challenges, requires improved collaboration, access to the latest scientific and technical information and financing. SB 262 will improve the state’s interactions with local governments, agencies and non-profits on climate change.”

After the Little Hoover Commission issued a report, “Governing California Through Climate Change” that found there was a need for a more unified approach to adaptation from the state government, Wieckowski chaired a series of hearings across California in 2015.  He successfully authored SB 246 that year to create the ICARP, an information clearinghouse, and technical advisory council.

The East Bay Regional Parks District supports SB 262.

“As operators of over 55 miles of Bay-Delta shoreline and 121,000 acres of open space, the East Bay Regional Park District experiences firsthand the effects of a changing climate on natural and built infrastructure,” said EBRD General Manager Robert E. Doyle.  “EBRPD supports SB 262 to enhance California’s coordination of climate adaptation strategies and protect infrastructure for years to come.”

The bill is also supported by the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, the Union of Concerned Scientists, U.S. Resiliency Council and other organizations.

Senator Wieckowski represents the 10th District, which includes southern Alameda County and parts of Santa Clara County.