EPA Prepares Utilities for Climate Change


One resource designed to help utilities prepare for climate changes is the USEPA’s Climate Ready Water Utilities (CRWU) program

As more exaggerated weather variations accompany climate change, many utilities are being forced to adapt. Coastal utilities may be particularly aware of their vulnerability to storms after Superstorm Sandy, but other parts of the country are projected to experience more frequent flooding, drought, and other severe weather events as well. One resource designed to help utilities prepare for climate changes is the USEPA’s Climate Ready Water Utilities (CRWU) program.

Tools to Help You Prepare

If you click on the Tools tab of the CRWU page, you’ll find a number of resources intended to help you evaluate your utility’s climate readiness and plan for the future. These resources include links to maps of projected climate changes, storm surges, and hurricane strikes; the CRWU Toolbox; an adaptation strategies guide; reports on utility resilience exercises using the Climate Resilience and Awareness Tool (CREAT); and various reports and links to relevant materials from other programs. It also links to the CREAT homepage, which includes even more information on the tool and its use.

Climate Planning Guidance

In addition to the materials listed under the Tools page, the CRWU website also includes a Training tab, with slides and video recordings of training webinars on CRWU and CREAT topics. This page includes several presentations introducing the basic of CREAT, CRWU, climate change, and climate change planning. It also includes some more advanced topics, such as methods of future planning, case studies, and financial planning. For utilities who need some background before jumping into the resilience evaluation process, these presentations can be a good place to start.

What Climate Planning Might Look Like for You

All of these resources may sound well and good, but what does climate change planning actually mean for your utility? Stocking up on tinfoil hats? Getting your Chicken Little dance down? Thankfully, the answer is much more practical. In this video, CRWU profiles a small utility in Kentucky that was forced to adapt to increased flooding.

Source: Small Water Supply

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