Climate Change Vulnerability Assessments: Four Case Studies of Water Utility Practices
This report presents a series of case studies describing the approaches currently (as of 2011) being taken by four water utilities in the United States to assess their vulnerability to climate change. The report is not intended to be a comprehensive listing of assessment approaches or utilities conducting vulnerability assessments. Rather, its purpose is to illustrate a range of issues and current approaches taken by selected utilities that are proactive in climate adaptation to understand and respond to climate risk.
The approaches taken by the different utilities to assess their vulnerability to climate change range from sophisticated environmental modeling and scenario analysis to qualitative methods based on reviews of available literature. The case studies illustrate different approaches that reflect specific local needs and conditions, existing vulnerabilities, local partnerships, and available information about climate change. Information from these case studies will be of use to water utilities and other members of the water resources community to inform the development of strategies for understanding and responding to climate change.
For more detailed information on how the East Bay Municipal Utility District, Seattle and other utilities organized their vulnerability assessments, see Climate Change Vulnerability Assessments: A Review of Water Utility Practices.