Leadership & Legacy: Handbook for Local Elected Officials on Climate Change
Source: ICLEI Canada
Author(s): Holly Vaughan
Communities are seeing and feeling changes in weather first hand. More frequent and severe weather events tax the built environment and human population, storm surges damage infrastructure, and extreme heat and smog days send vulnerable populations to hospital.
This Handbook has been tailored for Mayors and other elected officials as you are the ones on the front lines; your communities are experiencing the changes in climate most acutely. The goal of this Handbook is to provide justifications for why cities should proactively undertake an adaptation process and information on climate change that you can use when explaining or rationalizing adaptive actions. The Handbook also offers clear-cut strategies on communicating climate change and the necessity of adaptation in cities. Although it is intended to be used by elected officials directly, this Handbook can also serve as a tool for municipal staff to build and maintain momentum at the political level for ongoing climate change adaptation action.
The Handbook is divided into three sections: Section one provides information on climate change impacts and how to approach adaptation. Section two provides an overview of the importance of local government action, the value of being proactive, and how to build and maintain momentum when integrating adaptation into municipal operations. The final section offers strategies for communicating climate change and adaptation successfully, including specific responses that can be given when confronted with common impediments to climate change action.
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