Resilient IE is a collaborative effort between WRCOG and the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority (SBCTA), funded by Caltrans that is working to support regional and local efforts to prepare for and mitigate risks associated with climate adaptation and transportation infrastructure. Caltrans awarded a total of $683k to develop six primary project components:
- A newly established regional climate collaborative, the “Inland Empire Regional Climate Collaborative” (IERCC);
- A revision to WRCOG’s community vulnerability assessment and establishment of a vulnerability assessment for San Bernardino County;
- A pilot project assessing the true, community cost of a downed or damaged transportation asset;
- City-level, climate-related transportation hazards and evacuation maps;
- A climate resilient transportation infrastructure guidebook; and
- A regional climate adaptation and resiliency template general plan element.
Resilient IE project updates will be provided here as new information arises.
For more information on the project components, see below.
- Inland Empire Regional Climate Collaborative: The Collaborative will be formed between WRCOG and SBCTA as a local branch of the Alliance of Regional Collaboratives for Climate Adaptation (ARCCA). ARCCA is a network of leading regional collaboratives from across California that work together to advance climate adaptation statewide and increase local capacity to build community resilience. Through the Collaborative, WRCOG and SBCTA would connect with peers across the state to exchange knowledge, engage in targeted problem-solving, and implement joint campaigns for climate resiliency, effectively breaking down silos across sectors and jurisdictions, with the express aim of increasing local efficiency.
- Vulnerability Assessment: In 2014, WRCOG completed its Subregional Climate Action Plan, CAPtivate, which included an Adaptation and Resiliency Strategy, often referred to as a Vulnerability Assessment (VA), which provides an overview of expected climate change effects, assets in the subregion that are vulnerable to climate change effects, and adaptation strategies intended to reduce vulnerability and increase resilience. As a component of the Adaptation Toolkit, a VA will be developed for SBCTA and WRCOG’s existing VA will be updated to integrate the newest science and best practices and ensure consistency with the SBCTA’s, for the purposes of providing similarly consistent and complementary work products for the other tasks included in the Project.
- Pilot Project: The pilot project will perform an analysis of a selection of transportation assets in San Bernardino County, examining data related to each asset which extends beyond the simple cost of construction and maintenance in an effort to capture the true financial cost to the community as a whole, of a potential infrastructure outage, which could be caused by a climate-related issue, such as fire or flood.
- Transportation Hazards and Evacuation Maps: The transportation hazards and evacuation maps will be developed for each WRCOG and SBCTA member agency and compiled into a portfolio of jurisdiction-level maps that can be used for a variety of climate adaptation and resiliency planning efforts, including insertion into local hazard mitigation plans, safety elements of the General Plan, or local adaptation plans / strategies. Leveraging its considerable in-house resources and expertise, SBCTA will take the lead on this element of the project, though WRCOG will be involved throughout the process.
- Climate Resilient Transportation Infrastructure Guidebook: With information from the existing WRCOG vulnerability analysis, and the SBCTA analysis to be developed as a component of this grant, the Guidebook will provide strategies using green streets infrastructure, which aims to harness the efficacy of natural processes to manage flooding and extreme heat, to mitigate identified risks and provide resiliency to climate change effects on the transportation system. For example, permeable pavement can be used to help reduce pavement temperatures by absorbing sunlight, mitigate the urban heat island effect, and slow flash flooding during flood and storm events.
- Regional Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Template General Plan Element: The Regional Template Climate Adaptation & Resiliency Element will be a timely resource for jurisdictions to incorporate into their General Plans or use in other policy to meet newly enacted requirements under SB 379, which mandates that the safety elements of General Plans must now include climate adaptation and resiliency strategies, or that these strategies must otherwise be included in local hazard mitigation plans. This template element will build on work previously conducted in WRCOG’s Subregional Climate Action / Adaptation Plan, and will provide the necessary framework for jurisdictions to comply with new SB 379 mandates.