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Climate Change Program


Administrating Agency: Resources Agency
Bond: Proposition 84
Department Name: Department of Water Resources
Bond Statute: 75041
Implementing Statute: Executive Order S-3-05

  • Front-end
  • In-Progress
  • Follow-up
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The Safe Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River and Coast Protection Bond Act of 2006 (Proposition 84) made funds available  for two overarching climate change activities:

PConduct detailed evaluations of projected climate change impacts on the state’s water supply and flood control systems
PIdentify potential system redesign alternatives that would improve adaptability and public benefits.

In June 2005, Governor Schwarzenegger signed Executive Order S-3-05 declaring that California is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, including reduction in the quality and supply from the Sierra snowpack and the rise in sea level along the 1100 miles of coastline. In November 2008, the Governor issued Executive Order S-13-08, which directs State agencies, including DWR, to begin preparing California to adapt to these impacts.  The climate change program provides essential information on water impacts for both the Climate Action Team’s Biennial Climate Change Assessments and the California Climate Adaptation Strategy required by the Governor’s Executive Orders, as well as the California Water Plan Update.

As part of this program, DWR will initiate studies, in cooperation with other State agencies and stakeholders to: (1) evaluate in greater detail the anticipated effects of climate change on California’s rivers and waterways; (2) recommend how to redesign these systems to minimize flood impacts, maintain water supplies, and minimize environmental impacts to fish and to riparian habitats; and (3) identify impacts to coastal waterways and inland estuaries, such as the Delta, from rising sea levels, so that recommendations can be developed to address specific problems. Additional information about this program can be found on the California Department of Water Resources website.

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Funds authorized under Chapter 4 of Proposition 84 for climate change activities will be used primarily by Department of Water Resources (DWR) staff, with a small portion for contracts for consultants to complete specific, short-term tasks related to the work described in the Front-end Accountability statement. Internal monthly matrix team meetings will be held with key DWR staff to maintain communication and coordination, monitor work progress towards the stated objectives and schedule, and resolve any issues. On a continuous basis, the climate change program manager will review the status of budget expenditures by program components, to ensure that annual budget allocation is not exceeded. The program manager will also oversee all consultant contracts and review invoices to verify that deliverables are acceptable, and the work is completed to the satisfaction of the DWR. Program status, issues and accomplishments will be regularly reported to DWR management as well as the Governor’s Climate Action Team, established by Executive Order S-3-05.

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Funds authorized under Chapter 4 of Proposition 84 for climate change activities will be used primarily by Department of Water Resources (DWR) staff related to the work described in the Front-end Accountability statement. As part of the Governor’s Climate Action Team, DWR will (1) provide analyses on anticipated effects of climate change on California rivers and waterways; (2) make recommendations on redesign of these systems to minimize flood impacts, maintain water supplies, and minimize environmental impacts to fish and riparian habitats; and (3) make recommendations to address specific problems identified along coastal waterways and inland estuaries from rising sea levels. Annual reports will summarize bond fund expenditures and progress. Ultimately performance will be measured via completion of milestones established by DWR for various climate change initiatives, and by objectives defined by the Governor’s Climate Action Team, as reported in the Biennial Assessments required under Executive Order S-3-05.  Progress to date was summarized for the public in a Climate Change Achievements Report, issued in November 2010, and available on the California Department of Water Resources website.