finding 14.3 : limited-rural-capacity-for-climate-adaptation

Responding to additional challenges from climate change impacts will require significant adaptation within rural transportation and infrastructure systems, as well as health and emergency response systems. Governments in rural communities have limited institutional capacity to respond to, plan for, and anticipate climate change impacts.



This finding is from chapter 14 of Climate Change Impacts in the United States: The Third National Climate Assessment.

Process for developing key messages: The key messages were initially developed at a meeting of the authors in Charleston, South Carolina, in February, 2012. This initial discussion was supported by a series of conference calls from March through June, 2012. These ensuing discussions were held after a thorough review of the technical inputs and associated literature, including the Rural Communities Workshop Report prepared for the NCAe49f5471-72a0-4922-ade9-d1f5bafcf68b and additional technical inputs on a variety of topics.

Description of evidence base: The key message and supporting text summarize extensive evidence documented in the Rural Communities Workshop Report.e49f5471-72a0-4922-ade9-d1f5bafcf68b Thirty one technical input reports on a wide range of topics that were also received and reviewed as part of the Federal Register Notice solicitation for public input. Rural communities are not equipped to deal with major infrastructure expenses.16998c0a-72fd-4bba-9b08-b3af889ffbee Work has been performed illustrating the need to tie adaptation measures to specific local conditions and needs and take into account existing social networks.9c6ff956-6d0a-4e89-a491-fb8fd85a7707 d8d42de1-7edd-4805-8efd-03ca0df77667 f15fdd87-4e66-461a-ad52-5bb975d0db92 Publications have shown that there are a number of critical factors to be assessed, including the quality and availability of natural resources, legacies of past use of resources, and changing industrial needs that affect economic, environmental, and social conditions.9051aa9f-e32e-48a5-9696-b1771064883d d343707a-98a7-4be0-aead-7505bd232dcc b505ee32-ec95-4ec7-8205-060f91d69390 d4958b6e-00e1-43a0-8ef3-1b089e2d9a6a 7e2fdb15-edda-40b0-a126-aa3bf5c1897a e97280dd-e8b1-4695-923e-20dc2d49e97e 87577e63-4f1a-4742-808a-adf1a57a67c3 12656b08-9903-4b05-a983-4c26b3988e52 be024d51-9e23-4ed7-9d9f-9e5139e80f9f Additionally, studies have expressed the requirement of accounting for both near- and long-term needs for climate change adaptation to be successful.0aa57e90-0f74-4e7a-832a-50ee6e4a1469 08dee422-b709-4088-96ef-b4be650bfdac

New information and remaining uncertainties: It is difficult to fully capture the complex interactions of the entire socioeconomic-ecological system within which the effects of climate change will interact, especially in regard to local and regional impacts. Impact assessments and adaptation strategies require improved understanding of capacity and resilience at every level, international to local. The policy context in which individuals and communities will react to climate effects is vague and uncertain. Identification of informational needs alone indicates that adaptation will be expensive.

Assessment of confidence based on evidence: Given the evidence and uncertainties, there is high confidence that rural communities have limited capacity to respond to impacts, because of their remoteness, age, lack of diversity, and other reasons described in the text. Given the evidence and uncertainties, there is high confidence that rural communities have limited capacity to plan for impacts, as explained in the text. Given the evidence and uncertainties, there is high confidence that rural communities will have limited capacity to anticipate impacts because of the lack of infrastructure and expertise available in rural communities. Given the evidence and uncertainties, there is high confidence that significant climate change adaptation is needed for transportation in rural communities. Given the evidence and uncertainties, there is high confidence that significant climate change adaptation is needed for health care and emergency response in rural communities, so that rural communities can handle climate change impacts

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