Category Archives: Resilient Virginia News

2017 Resilient Virginia Conference Delivers on its Promise to Connect Communities, Businesses, and Educators for Resiliency Solutions

Aug. 1-2: Resilient Virginia ConferenceFor the second year, our Resilient Virginia Conference was a great success, bringing together state, local, and national leaders to share know-how and inspire further efforts toward local resiliency actions. Conference participants shared these comments:

“Amazing to see such a gathering in Virginia!”

“Well worth attending for the diverse topics, people, and interactions!”

“A truly fantastic event!”

We are pleased that Governor Terry McAuliffe kicked off the event with a statement about the importance of holding the second Resilient Virginia Conference. You can view his statement here.

You will also be able to revisit the insights provided by national and state-level experts in the Plenary Sessions, as we will be including their presentations on our website in video format. Led by Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran, conference speakers addressed resiliency perspectives from the national level as well as sharing lessons learned from Louisiana and Colorado. The Lunch Plenary Panel provided insights into the economic value to both governments and corporations of adopting resiliency in policies and operations. In addition, Day Two Plenary Session speakers provided highlights of the 100 Resilient Cities Planning Process and the NIST Community Resilience Planning Guide, and the final Lunchtime Plenary Panel included state elected officials who shared their thoughts on moving Virginia forward toward a comprehensive resiliency plan.

We will also be sharing the Breakout Session presentations that included a wide range of topics, which can be reviewed on the conference website.

Secretary Moran provided his own summary of why resiliency needs to be addressed in a collaborative fashion, in forums such as the Resilient Virginia Conference, when he observed that “Resilience ultimately is our ability to keep our fundamental resources — water, air, land, and critical infrastructure — safe and usable for our communities, for generations to come.”

We thank Secretary Moran, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, Dominion Energy, and all our Sponsors, Exhibitors, Partners, and Planning Committee Members for working to make the 2017 Resilient Virginia Conference a memorable event.

Annette Osso, Managing Director, Resilient Virginia

August 2017

Resilient Virginia Provides Local Governments Guide to Resiliency Planning

In collaboration with GoGreen Virginia, a Virginia Municipal League and Virginia Association of Counties program, Resilient Virginia is offering a guide to resiliency planning — the Resiliency Checklist. Formulated to add credits to the annual Green Government Challenge, the guide can also be utilized separately by local governments wanted a starting point to tackle comprehensive mitigation and adaptation approaches to disasters, climate extremes, and other risks faced by communities.

Resilient Virginia plans to work with Planning District Commissions to develop workshops around this guide to assist local governments in gaining the competency to move forward in resiliency planning. You can review an brief presentation on the Resiliency Checklist from the Resilient Virginia Conference here and the entire document here.

Resiliency Checklist
Click to view the Resiliency Checklist presentation

2017 Resilient Virginia Conference

Thanks for Coming!

The 2017 Resilient Virginia Conference

Connecting Communities, Business, and Educators for Resiliency Solutions

August 1–2, 2017  |  Richmond, Virginia

PARTNERS     AGENDA & SPEAKERS     SPONSORS/EXHIBITORS     CONTACT

THANKS FOR ATTENDING!
CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS COMING SOON!

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Walking The Talk: Business Resilience Planning at Facility Engineering Associates

by Maureen Roskoski, CFM, SFP, LEED AP O+M,
Senior Professional, Corporate Sustainability Officer
Facility Engineering Associates

Business Resilience is the ability to rapidly adapt and respond to business disruptions while maintaining continuous business operations. Business resilience planning provides guidance for ensuring the ability to respond, resume, and restore to a pre-determined level of operation following a disruption. At FEA, we help our clients strive for resilience through comprehensive planning that takes a holistic and long-term view of the threats and their individual enterprise in order to ensure that the business is prepared to avoid, mitigate, and recover from adverse events. But, what were we doing ourselves? Were we walking the talk?

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Hear All About It! PrepareAthon Organizers on Richmond’s PBS Station (88.9 FM)

PrepareAthon 2016 took place August 27, 2016, and offered participants activities and information focused on emergency preparedness; sustainable lifestyle options such as energy saving homes, local food, healthy lifestyles, and stormwater; and adaptation strategies such as installing solar or wind systems. Local emergency responders, including Richmond Fire and Emergency Services and Red Cross representatives, were available, and hands-on workshops — for example, build your own emergency preparedness kit or rain barrel — and a variety of hands-on activities for children and adults were part of the event.

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New Economic Assessment Resources Now Available

By Allison Meade, Resilient Virginia Intern,
and Rising Senior, Cornell University Biology and Society Major

Recent updates to the Resources portion of the Resilient Virginia website have allowed for the inclusion of three economic assessments related to climate change. These reports, which were written and published by well-known names such as Michael Bloomberg and the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, approach the economic impact of climate change by assessing the risks presented and costs of inaction.

Risky BusinessThe first of the three is called Risky Business, The Economic Risks of Climate Change in the United States. It was published in June 2014 and co-chaired by Michael Bloomberg, Henry Paulson Jr. and Thomas Steyer. The report introduces climate risk by region, covering the continental U.S. as well as Alaska and Hawaii, and explores next steps to take in risk management. The research used for the report combines peer-reviewed climate science projections through 2100 and derived estimates of the impacts of the projected changes in temperature, precipitation, sea levels, and storm activity on the national economy (Risky Business).

Climate Change: Cost of Inaction for Maryland's EconomyThe second report was produced in November 2015 by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions and is entitled Climate Change: Cost of Inaction for Maryland’s Economy. The report builds on their publication, American Climate Prospectus, in estimating how climate change will affect infrastructure, tourism, ecosystems, agriculture, water resources, and human health. The report also includes an updated version of the costs of inaction that were previously in the Maryland Plan to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions.

Resilient CitiesThe third economic assessment resource was produced as a Grosvenor Research Report in April 2015 and is called Resilient Cities. As a private property group, Grosvenor conducted this research to help their clients move beyond classic definitions of property risk, and fully take into account the shifting patterns contributing to the uncertain future of real estate across the globe. The report quantifies the resilience of 50 of the most important cities in the world, based on two key components of resiliency: vulnerability and adaptive capacity.

With regard to vulnerability, the study analyzed five different themes. First, cities were assessed for vulnerability to physical events resulting from climate change, including sea level change, hurricanes and typhoons, floods, droughts, and mass movements of populations. Under the second theme, environment, threats from all types of pollution and overconsumption of resources were measured. The third theme included a measurement of each city’s ability to provide access to food, energy, and water at a reasonable cost. Fourth, the cities were evaluated according to their level of housing and transport infrastructure along with basic utilities. Lastly, each city’s internal tensions were assessed with regard to factors such as affordable housing, education and health, religious and cultural freedom, crime-free living conditions, and business environments.

The adaptive capacity component was also based on five areas of city performance. First, the cities were evaluated for democratic governing, freedom of speech and community involvement. Second, cities were assessed based on long-term projects and the associated groups involved. Third, the technical advancement of each city was evaluated through existing monitoring organizations and the technical expertise of institutions. Disaster management programs were evaluated in the fourth area of city performance, making budget resources and funding the last assessment theme for adaptive capacity.

Based on the five areas of each component, cities were placed on a ranking scale for both vulnerability and adaptive capacity, and an overall scale combining both. The study concluded that the top three most resilient cities are located in Canada, with two U.S. cities following close behind. The study also concluded that the cities that will be facing the strain of great population growth in the future are also those with the least adaptive capacities.

Each of these articles can be found under the publications section of the resources tab on the Resilient Virginia website.

2016 Resilient Virginia Conference-Related Publications Now Available

banner-2016-rva-conferenceBy Allison Meade, Resilient Virginia Intern,
and Rising Senior, Cornell University Biology and Society Major

In order to provide readers direct access to timely reports that were referenced at the March 2016 Conference, Resilient Virginia has posted some of them on our Resources page (www.resilientvirginia.org/resources/publications). These resources vary in content, from agricultural and water mitigation techniques to a rating system for sustainable infrastructure, although they all connect to the idea of resiliency.

norfolk-resiliency-planOf the resources, notable reads include the Norfolk Resiliency Plan, NIST Community Resilience Planning Guide, Climate Change Adaptation for Agriculture, and the Nature Conservancy Guide for Incorporating Ecosystem Service Valuation into Coastal Restoration Projects. These all provide examples of local, state or regional initiatives to plan for mitigation and adaptation strategies that will help establish resilient communities across the country.

guide-for-incorporating-ecosystem-service-valuationThe posted resources are intended to serve local governments, businesses, and community organizations as examples of ongoing activities promoting resiliency planning and potentially frameworks for future actions. You can also view many of the presentations given at the 2016 Resilient Virginia Conference at http://resilientvirginia.org/buildings/2016-conference. All publications shared by Resilient Virginia can be found at this link.

Annual Meeting Speakers Highlight Resiliency Initiatives Around the Commonwealth

By Allison Meade, Resilient Virginia Intern and Annette Osso, Managing Director, Resilient Virginia

On Thursday, June 30, Resilient Virginia held its 2016 Annual Meeting in Charlottesville, Virginia. Resilient Virginia took the opportunity to highlight year two accomplishments, including the first statewide Resilient Virginia Conference, and to introduce the new Board of Directors.

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The meeting hosted three guest speakers and also provided a presentation on the newly developed Resiliency Checklist for Local Governments. Our guest speakers were: Angela Navarro, the Deputy Secretary of Natural Resources; Terence Hill, a Senior Policy Advisor at EMerge Alliance; and Adrianna Vargo, the Director of Grower Services at Local Food Hub. Each took time to present on resiliency progress in their areas of work.

Angela Navarro spoke about the June 28 news release by Governor McAuliffe on the signing of Executive Order 57 to reduce carbon emissions in the state. The order directs the creation of a workgroup and steps to take towards reducing carbon pollution from the state electricity sector in order to meet the requirements of the Clean Power Plan. The news release on the signing of the order can be found at the Governor’s newsroom page.

Terence Hill followed Navarro with a short presentation on the resilient design attributes of direct current, microgrids, and transactive energy systems. Hill’s presentation on the technology involved, design options, and their impacts can be found here. Adrianna Vargo was the third guest presenter, speaking about the LocalFoodHub and their efforts in local Virginia communities. She focused on the connection of local farms to regional markets and the positive impact this has on both the farmers and consumers of the local food. Her presentation and website with details on the scope of business are provided.

Following the guest speakers, Annette Osso, Managing Director of Resilient Virginia. gave a presentation on the 2016 version of the Virginia Municipal League and Virginia Association of Counties Go Green Virginia checklist. New this year is the Resiliency Checklist section of the GoGreen Government Challenge. The Resiliency Checklist, developed by Resilient Virginia Board members and other colleagues, provides a roadmap for localities to use when assessing the state of their resiliency preparedness, finding the gaps, and planning ahead.

The checklist provides a spirited point system meant to encourage actions to reduce carbon emissions within the local government and wider community, and find out more about the GoGreen Government Challenge here. It encompasses 11 areas for action including community involvement, resiliency, energy efficiency, renewable energy, procurement, land use and transportation, environmental stewardship, water quality supply and flooding, waste management, employee incentives, and innovation.

For the last portion of the meeting, attendees were invited to give short presentations on their work with resiliency. Notable presentations included: Travorise Marks, Resilience Program Manager, from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, who spoke on emergency preparedness within the state; Joanie Freeman of Eco-Village Charlottesville, who spoke on the progress of that initiative; Vince Meldrum from Earth Force who spoke about youth involvement in stormwater management; Joyce Bodoh from the Rappahannock Electric Cooperative who spoke on the utility’s energy efficiency initiatives, and Jim Pierobon with Southeast Energy News who spoke about ongoing coverage of clean energy and conventional energy topics in the Southeastern United States. The overarching themes of mitigation and adaptation were developed and reflected on by all who participated.

Finally, Nell Boyle, the newly elected Chair of the Board of Directors, encouraged people to become involved in planning committees for upcoming programs, such as a webinar series and the 2017 Resilient Virginia Conference. She encouraged support for our statewide resiliency initiatives by becoming a member or annual sponsor of Resilient Virginia.

Event Presentations

Terence Hill: Resilient/Reach Building Code

Introducing Resilient ArlingtonClick to launch slideshow


Adrianna Vargo: Local Food Hub

Introducing Resilient ArlingtonClick to launch slideshow


Resilient Virginia: 2016 Annual Meeting

Introducing Resilient ArlingtonClick to launch slideshow

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