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Climate Resilience Newsletter

Broward County’s Environmental Planning and Community Resilience Division is responsible for coordinating the County’s climate resiliency planning strategies as part of County agency operations. The Division is also responsible for regional collaborations with Broward municipalities, state and federal agencies, and as a member county of the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact.

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Upcoming Events - Not to be missed!

October – Energy Month hosted by Broward County

October 24th & 25th – Save The Date SEFL Regional Climate Leadership Summit hosted by Miami Dade County

November 7th - King Tide Citizen Science Project (Toolkits available for schools and community groups)

View event information and additional events

Broward Resilience Engagement Highlights

Staff continue to engage in regional and national efforts to collaborate and further the practice of resilience planning. Recent engagement with the Florida Chamber of Commerce, Florida Association of Counties, the National Conference on Ecosystem Restoration, the Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association, the National Academy of Sciences, Climate Assessment Workshop and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory contributed toward the County’s continued ability to be an innovation leader.

Regional Resilience Standards: Minimum Seawall Heights

The Jacksonville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, in partnership with Broward County, conducted a Flood Risk Management Study for tidally influenced coastal areas (not direct oceanfront) located within Broward County to address flooding problems. Through analysis of current and future flooding frequency and evaluation of the risks of storm surge flooding and economic impacts, the justification for a regional resilience standard for seawall top elevations and coastal infrastructure adaptation was developed. The regional standard can serve as a basis for municipal ordinances and a planning foundation for resilience investments across our community. On September 10th, results from the study were shared with stakeholders, announcing a proposal for a minimum seawall height standard of 4 feet NAVD by 2035 and 5 feet NAVD by 2050 assuming redevelopment to FEMA flood standards and increased active drainage infrastructure occurs concurrently. Video of the event, presentations and a feedback survey are posted. Video of the event, presentations and a feedback survey are posted.

Broward Signs Under2 MOU

Continuing its decades-long record of leadership on climate change and environmental issues, Broward County has joined the Under2 Coalition, the largest global coalition of regional and state governments committed to keeping global temperature rises to under 2 degrees Celsius. Deputy County Administrator Monica Cepero ceremonially signed the Subnational Global Climate Memorandum of Understanding (commonly referred to as the “Under2 MOU”) at the Under2 Coalition General Assembly in San Francisco on September 12th during the Global Climate Action Summit. The Under2 Coalition includes more than 200 governments in 43 countries, representing 1.3 billion people and nearly 40 percent of the global economy. Cepero also announced Broward County’s intention to electrify its transit buses and County fleet vehicles by 2030 as part of its participation in the Under2 Zero Emission Vehicle Project, an international initiative launched by the Climate Group network and C40 cities. Broward County is the first county in Florida to join the Under2 Coalition. The Broward County Commission unanimously approved the Under2 MOU in November 2017, and the County’s request to join the Under2 Coalition was approved in May 2018. The global carbon emissions reduction goal of 80 percent to 95 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 contained in the Under2 MOU will be required to stabilize warming and environmental conditions including sea level rise by 2100.

Caption: Monica Cepero, Broward County Deputy County Administrator signing Under2MOU. 

Solsmart Broward

Broward County received a Bronze designation from the national SolSmart program for making it faster, easier, and more affordable for homes and businesses to go solar. Many of the awarded points were a result of efforts from the GOSOLAR program. This designation recognizes Broward County for taking bold steps to encourage solar energy growth and remove obstacles to solar development. For companies looking to expand, a SolSmart Bronze designation is a signal that Broward is “open for solar business.” SolSmart is led by The Solar Foundation and the International City/County Management Association and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office. As part of the SolSmart program, a team of national experts provides no-cost technical assistance to help communities achieve designation. Broward will be using the technical assistance to evaluate potential renewable energy installations on County facilities. More Photos

View from the stage of the Mayors Climate Roundtable

Caption: View from the stage at Oak Hammock Hall at Long Key Nature Center where the roundtable was held.

Peril of Flood Policy Review

In 2015, Florida Senate Bill 1094, “An Act relating to the peril of flood” was signed into law requiring consideration of future flood risk from storm surge and sea level rise in certain portions of local government comprehensive plans. In accordance with SB 1094, Florida Statute section 163.3178(2)(f)1 now includes sea-level rise as one of the causes of flood risk that must be addressed in the “redevelopment principles, strategies, and engineering solutions” to reduce flood risk. The law expands the flood insurance that may be offered by admitted insurance carriers, requires local governments to include a redevelopment component to reduce the risk of flood when drafting comprehensive coastal management plans, and requires surveyors and mappers to submit elevation certificates to the Division of Emergency Management. Environmental Planning and Community Resilience Division staff extensively reviewed existing Land Use and Comprehensive Plan policies and proudly report that Broward County is not only compliant but has more than 70 relevant policies that address flood risks across sectors.

Post-Disaster Redevelopment Planning

The Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact recently hosted the Regional Climate Action Plan Implementation Workshop on Post-Disaster Redevelopment Planning at the Broward County Commission Chambers in Fort Lauderdale. This one-day workshop addressed the critical need for Southeast Florida to plan redevelopment and recovery strategies prior to experiencing the shocks and stressors of extreme weather events. Professionals working in emergency management, urban planning, sustainability, and resilience learned about and discussed ways to strengthen the region’s resilience by improving the post-disaster redevelopment planning process. The workshop also focused on how climate resilience efforts can be integrated into and inform emergency management efforts. Broward’s stakeholder discussions highlighted the need for an aspirational future redevelopment map/ plan, cross-sector collaboration on redevelopment planning including existing housing plans, troubleshooting of delays in insurance adjustments, permitting, material shortages and ownership issues, development of reasonable timeframe targets for phased redevelopment and maintained continuity in stakeholder engagement.


Caption: Southeast Florida local government staff and community stakeholders discuss future redevelopment plan needs and approaches.

Cascading Impacts to Critical Infrastructure

Broward County coordinated with Deltares to implement their Critical Infrastructures: Relations and Consequences for Life and Environment (Circle) Tool. The Circle Tool, a new, open online tool that can be coupled with an interactive 3D model, was used to assess flood risks under future conditions, assess the vulnerability by sector coupled with risk modeling, evaluate and rank severity of exposure, interconnects and priority needs, identify and visualize critical adaptation needs and risk reduction benefits, elevate awareness, enhance communications and improve planning. The process included representatives of municipalities, utilities, drainage districts, government agencies (planning, permitting, water & wastewater services, airport, port staff), FDOT, SFWMD, and the consultant community. The workshops focused on group brainstorming sessions to identify how critical infrastructure was connected and threatened by future conditions and potential hazards including power outages from flooding, how negative impacts could be mitigated by adaptive actions, and the cost/feasibility/benefit of these actions. Ultimately the analyses aided in prioritizing planning goals and communication needs throughout the community. On September 24th, Deltares, Broward County and South Florida Water Management District are hosting a Webinar to present the Circle Tool, share their experiences and give advice on how the tool can be used in workshops for other case studies.


Caption: Visualization of results in Fort Lauderdale, Broward County showing flood risks and critical infrastructure dependencies.