Short Statement of Support
Members of the American Society of Adaptation Professionals (“ASAP”) applaud the introduction of the National Coordination on Adaptation and Resilience for Security Act (“NCARS”). Should Congress enact this legislation, the U.S. will move from reliance on executive action directed toward individual agency interventions to a stable, long-term, coherent national strategy that will ensure climate change preparedness.
NCARS is particularly promising because: 1) it builds on existing national and sub-national adaptation and resilience efforts and 2) the legislation itself is adaptive. ASAP wishes to call particular attention to the bill’s requirement to develop a national adaptation strategy but also to create implementation planning, monitoring and evaluation guardrails, mechanisms, to ensure that justice and equity remain at the center of national action, together with adequate Congressional appropriations. Congress must pass this bill in order to achieve critical progress forward to prepare the United States for the impacts of climate change.
Read the press release announcing the bill here.
Long Statement of Support
Members of the American Society of Adaptation Professionals (ASAP) applaud the introduction of the National Coordination on Adaptation and Resilience for Security (“NCARS”). This highly functional piece of legislation will end ad hoc climate adaptation planning at the national level and create dependable and consistent groundwork (frameworks?) for building a more resilient nation. If Congress enacts this legislation, the U.S. will move from relying on a series of individual agency activities authorized through executive action alone to a stable, long-term, coherent national strategy to ensure climate change preparedness. This is critical, This is critical, for communities that currently experience climate impacts as well as for equitable and just climate futures for all.
NCARS is particularly promising because: 1) it builds on existing national and sub-national adaptation and resilience efforts, and 2) the legislation itself is adaptive.
- NCARS recognizes that adaptation practitioners and frontline communities across the country have been planning and implementing adaptation for decades. The bill creates pathways to inform national adaptation strategy through well-structured working groups and councils. ASAP applauds the emphasis on the importance of input from sectors beyond the federal and the opportunities to integrate citizen science and place-based knowledge.
- NCARS is simultaneously specific and flexible, maximizing its potential for effectiveness in an uncertain future. The specificity of the actions required by the Working Groups and Partners Council, and the detailed account of what would be included in the NCARO Report and the National Coordination on Adaptation and Resilience for Security Act, ensure an inclusive and complete process for national-level climate adaptation planning. Meanwhile, the flexibility NCARS affords creative solutions and adaptive management, the ability to engage in or reject specific actions based on current or uncertainty in modeling future conditions. Finally, the mandate to report on a quadrennial basis promotes consistent feedback and evaluation and guarantees an iterative engagement process for non-federal actors.
ASAP calls on Congress to pass this bill as soon as possible. It will take time to develop a national adaptation strategy. Getting the process underway by expeditiously passing this legislation will materially impact how the US is able to adapt and increase the resilience of communities in both the short and long term. Further, passing this legislation will support the creation of thousands of jobs by signaling predictable federal support for climate change adaptation work, encourage and reassure employers across all sectors and industries to hire workers in climate adaptation jobs across the nation.
ASAP wishes to call particular attention to:
- The bill’s requirement to develop not only a national adaptation strategy but also an implementation plan and monitoring and evaluation mechanisms. These components are critical to achieving equitable and effective adaptation outcomes at the pace and scale needed.
- Mechanisms to ensure that justice and equity remain at the center of national action under this legislation. This includes, first and foremost, centering the needs and experiences of underserved frontline communities. It also requires using the plans and recommendations that the bill mandates to critically assess policy and programmatic adjustments needed to improve the equitability and efficacy of the agency’s services and resources for climate adaptation and resilience.
- The need to ensure adequate appropriations. In particular, the positions of CRO and Executive Secretary need to be appropriated, rather than paid by home agencies. Funding for the Working Group and Partners Council must also be appropriated to reduce unfunded mandates to the agencies or add additional burden to non-federal partners.
Congress should swiftly pass this bill and achieve an enormous step forward in preparing the U.S. for the impacts of climate change.
Read the press release announcing the bill here.
Contact: Kyla Bloyer, email@example.com | 919-272-8031