“Increasing temperatures, decreasing water availability, more intense storm events, and sea level rise will each independently, and in some cases in combination, affect the ability of the United States to produce and transmit electricity from fossil, nuclear, and existing and emerging renewable energy sources… Quantifying the impacts of climate change on the nation’s energy infrastructure is increasingly important to improve understanding of the social and economic costs and benefits of resilience measures and response strategies… Ultimately, climate change adaptation and mitigation actions are complementary approaches that can jointly reduce the costs and risks of climate change and extreme weather. Effective adaptation strategies and the development and deployment of climate-resilient energy technologies will facilitate resilient energy systems in the United States and around the globe.”
– US Energy Sector Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and Extreme Weather, US Department of Energy, July 2013, DOE/PI-0013
International researchers, scholars and distinguished institutions are documenting climate change. Studies predict change-inducing shifts and extreme weather and atmospheric events including flooding, higher temperatures and sea levels, more precipitation, droughts, heat waves and storm surges. Due to significant vulnerabilities in social, economic, biological (e.g., health) and physical coping capacities, these consequences are predicted to result in disproportionate impacts in disadvantaged communities of color, low wealth communities and among the elderly, women, children and other sensitive groups. Effective efforts to address climate change will couple community engagement, readiness, and adequate support resources with climate adaptation, mitigation, externalizing the cost of carbon and reduction in greenhouse gases and co-pollutants.