An Actionable Vision for Addressing the Impacts of Climate Change in Rhode Island
"Climate resilience is defined as the capacity of individuals, institutions, businesses, and natural systems within Rhode Island to survive, adapt, and grow no matter what chronic stresses and weather events they experience."
- Resilient Rhody
On September 15, 2017, Governor Raimondo signed an Executive Order appointing Shaun O'Rourke, Director of Stormwater and Resiliency at the Infrastructure Bank, to take on the additional duties as Chief Resilience Officer .
The Statewide Climate Resilience Action Strategy — released on July 2, 2018 — responds to changing weather and environmental conditions in Rhode Island caused by climate change and proposes bold yet implementable actions to better prepare the state for these impacts.
Rhode Island is already experiencing climate change, and the impacts are placing communities, coastlines, forests and aging, vulnerable infrastructure at risk.
Under the leadership of Governor Gina M. Raimondo, steps have been taken to begin the hard work necessary to address the effects of climate change. Now is the time to invest in priority projects and reinforce the strong partnerships between the state and municipalities to empower and prepare communities for a new climate reality. Developing the Strategy has led to many lessons learned, particularly the importance of increased collaboration between state agencies and statewide partners to facilitate shared goal setting.
Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank is proud to have led the development of Resilient Rhody with a diverse group of statewide stakeholders.
Moving from planning to action is challenging and requires sustained energy and resources from key strategy development stakeholders. The Executive Climate Change Coordinating Council will provide continued leadership and staff resources to the implementation of this Strategy. As the state’s central hub for financing local infrastructure improvements, Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank will serve in a leadership role, bringing recommended projects from planning to implementation.
While the strategy was recently released, implementation has already begun. Each of the recommended actions are being refined to include a timeline for completion, agency ownership, and cost range. A system for tracking implementation progress and performance will also be developed to ensure accountability and identify gaps and trends.
Climate Resilience Action Strategy
61 Recommended Actions
54 Working Group Members from 13 State Agencies, 8 State-wide Organizations, and 3 Research Institutions
10 Resilience Roundtables which included 350+ participants
On May 15, 2018 — the second day of the 2018 National Infrastructure Week — the Town of Warren celebrated the groundbreaking of its newly upgraded wastewater treatment facility.