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EEJ & Resilient Infrastructure & Nature-based Solutions - Shared screen with speaker view
Kristin Barendregt-Ludwig
Hello everyone! Kristin Barendregt-Ludwig, Program Manager at the Yale Center for Environmental Justice and EEJ Working Group Co-Chair
Louanne Cooley
Hello, Louanne Cooley from UConn CIRCA, member of Resilient Infrastructure group
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Hi! Rebecca French, Director of the Office of Climate Planning. I am joined by all of the staff for the Office of Climate Planning: Ashley Benitez-Ou, Sarah Watson and Alanis Allen.
Kevin Grigg
Good afternoon; Kevin Grigg, CEO of Fuss & O'Neill. Happy (almost) Thanksgiving.
Marina Astitha
Hello all, happy to be involved in this important conversation. Marina Astitha, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Univ of Connecticut
Beth Bernard
Beth Bernard, Education Director from CT Forest & Park Association
Joanna Wozniak-Brown
Joanna Wozniak-Brown, CT OPM, Resilient Infrastructure workgroup member
Amy Blaymore Paterson, CLCC
Hello, Amy Blaymore Paterson, Executive Director, Connecticut Land Conservation Council
Emily Pysh (CTDOT)
Hello! Emily Pysh, CT Dept. of Transportation, Sustainability & Resiliency
Alicea Charamut
Alicea Charamut, Rivers Alliance of CT. I apologize, my camera decided not to work for this meeting.
Christopher Kelly
Chris Kelly, Save the Sound
Amber Garrard
Amber Garrard, Yale Office of Sustainability
Mary Buchanan
Hello! Mary Buchanan, Community Resilience Planner at CIRCA
Nicole Govert
Nicole Govert, Sustainable CT, Resilient Infrastructure working group member. Hello!
Megan Raymond
Hi all - Megan B. Raymond, SLR, Resilient Infrastructure/NB Solutions working group member.
Brian Thompson CT DEEP
Brian Thompson, Director of Land and Water Resources, DEEP
Denise Savageau
Denise Savageau, member of GC3 EJ work group and the Resilient Infrastructure and Nature-based Solutions work groups. Chair, CT Council on Soil and Water Conservation
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Ashley G. Benitez, Environmental Analyst, Office of Climate Planning CTDEEP.
Meghan Sloan
Meghan Sloan, Planning Director, MetroCOG
Maisa Tisdale
Maisa Tisdale, The Mary & Eliza Freeman Center for History and Community
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Thank you for continuing to introduce yourselves in the chat. You can also rename yourself by hovering over your name in the Participants list and clicking the … after than you should see an option to "rename" and can type in your affiliation.
Alycia Jenkins
Alycia Jenkins, Sierra Club CT, Campaign Organizer
Mike Hogan CTDOT
Mike Hogan, CTDOT, Principal Engineer, Hydraulics & Drainage/Soils & Foundations
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Tonight's Agenda: https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/DEEP/climatechange/GC3/GC3-2022-agendas-and-minutes/GC3-EEJ-Resilient-Infrastructure-and-Nature-based-Solutions-Agenda-111722.pdf
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
You can find the detailed guidance Alex summarized here: https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/DEEP/climatechange/GC3/GC3-2022-agendas-and-minutes/EEJ-Public-Guidance-Excerpt.pdf
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Mary Buchanan (CIRCA, she/her)
Here is information on the CIRCA CCVI: https://resilientconnecticut.uconn.edu/ccvi/
Louanne Cooley- UConn CIRCA
Link to CIRCA technical tools: https://resilientconnecticut.uconn.edu/resources/
Alanis Allen, DEEP Office of Climate Planning
Centering Equity Guide: https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/DEEP/climatechange/GC3/GC3-2022-agendas-and-minutes/Centering-Equity-in-Climate-Change-Resilience-PlanningA-Guide-for-Connecticut-Municipalities672022.pdf
Mary Buchanan (CIRCA, she/her)
That link is for the first version of the CCVI, which is only for New Haven and Fairfield Counties, but as Ashley mentioned we are currently working on expanding it statewide!
Sarah Watson, DEEP Office of Climate Planning (she/her)
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Thank you for sharing those resources, everyone!
Mary Buchanan (CIRCA, she/her)
Here's the link to the mapping tool Joanna mentioned, which is a project of CIRCA and DEEP: https://connecticut-environmental-justice.circa.uconn.edu/
Joanna Wozniak-Brown
Sorry Rebecca! and thanks Marina! :)
Katharine Morris s
are schools considered affecting facilities?
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
No worries. Great discussion. So important!
Katharine Morris s
or rather, can they be on the basis of air pollution
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
@katharine, I would have to ask Edith on that one. I think this EJ statute is usually applied to facilities that do impact air quality and are regulated for those emissions, such as power plants
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
actually we have this info. on our website: https://portal.ct.gov/DEEP/Environmental-Justice/Environmental-Justice-Affecting-Facilities
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
EJ affecting facilities: (A) electric generating facility with a capacity of more than 10 megawatts;(B) sludge or solid waste incinerator or combustor;(C) sewage treatment plant with a capacity of more than 50 million gallons per day;(D) intermediate processing center, volume reduction facility or multitown recycling facility with a combined monthly volume in excess of 25 tons;(E) new or expanded landfill, including, but not limited to, a landfill that contains ash, construction and demolition debris or solid waste;(F) medical waste incinerator; or(G) major source of air pollution, as defined by the federal Clean Air Act
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
BRIC = Building Resilient Infrastructure in Communities - this is a Federal Emergency Management Agency grant program to reduce or prevent damage from natural hazards
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Those cement structures with holes in this picture are the "reef balls"
Brian Thompson CT DEEP
The Stratford project and other CT examples of living shorelines can be found in the Projects tab https://portal.ct.gov/DEEP/Coastal-Resources/Coastal-Management/Living-Shorelines
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Picture on the top is the street near the train station in New Haven. This kind of flooding is a regular occurrence here
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
ACOE - Army Corps of Engineerins
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Kristin Barendregt-Ludwig
Does anyone have the link to the website where we can find these presentations? It would be great to include it in the chat.
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
All presentations and meeting minutes are always posted on this site within one week of the working group meeting
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
You can find the slides under the Resilient Infrastructure & Nature-based Solutions working group meetings.
Katharine Morris s
what are the environmental risks associated with increased levels of "fill"
Katharine Morris s
what types of "fill" are ecologically appropriate for coastal shorelines
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
we are going directly into discussion after this presentation. If you would like to provide public comment, please send a direct message to Ashley Benitez to sign up.
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Ground rules for the discussion and public comment can be found attached to the agenda here: https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/DEEP/climatechange/GC3/GC3-2022-agendas-and-minutes/GC3-EEJ-Resilient-Infrastructure-and-Nature-based-Solutions-Agenda-111722.pdf
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Follow the ground rules for respectful discussion attached to the agenda and keep this list in your mind.Focused, no-fault problem-solving.Step forward, step back.Open, honest, safe space.Listen with open minds, believe in everyone’s best intentions.Action-oriented. Decide what we want, when we want it, and plan for its happening.Collaboration!Start, proceed, and end on time, honor the agenda.
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Discussion questions for today’s working group meeting:- What successful applications of the equity and environmental justice lens did you hear in the presentation today?- How can we encourage the integration of equity and environmental justice concerns and considerations in resilient infrastructure and nature-based solutions decisions and designs?
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Please come on camera working group members for the discussion.
Amy Blaymore Paterson, CLCC
Great questions, Maisa!
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
We would love to hear your suggestions for looking ahead to 2023 in terms EEJ + Resilient Infrastructure & Nature-based Solutions. Also feel free to post them here. Thank you!
Leticia Colon
I am leaving information on our very EJ outcomes here: https://efficiencyforall.org/wordpress/2022/03/01/efa-2021-workforce-development-outcomes/
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
Thank you, Leticia!
Leticia Colon
Here is info on Health and Energy nexus
Leticia Colon
Leticia Colon
Here at the 4 equity lens as they relate to energy and climate change https://efficiencyforall.org/wordpress/2020/02/25/governors-council-on-climate-change-gc3-equity-lens/
Leticia Colon
What efforts have been made to intentionally engage the 33 EJ communities in the work directly. For example, is anyone providing direct education climate and resilience planning for EJ communities in CT?
Leticia Colon
++++ on What Maisa said... also in relation to applying the 4 DEI lens. They must be applied during planning - vs after the money is spent and plan has been laid.. In order to use the equity lens we must ensure the people writing the plans at CIRCA, DEEP, and Green Bank understand the needs of the EJ communities. The needs are broad and include the right to know, to be prepared and to weigh on how the state and quasi spend the investments to ensure At risk communities have a chance to be at the planning table to gain access to respucres.
Katharine Morris s
Example: of Poor Land Use Decision: Building Bassick High School in a FEMA flood zone next to at least 2 affecting facilities -- a 129$ million dollar investment = MAJOR EJ ISSUE
Leticia Colon
Like every time we ignore the least of us- in favor of giving more to those who have more power already.
Louanne Cooley- UConn CIRCA
New Britain’s recent adoption of the second in the state stormwater authority they are calling the “Clean Water Fund” was an excellent example of the creation of a public utility in an EJ community that involved community in the process and and decision making and in the use of the funding collected for stormwater management.
Melinda Tuhus
I am also concerned about the prospect of building the new Bassick High School in a very vulnerable site.
Reginald Fortcolin
Leticia Colon
Earlier- there were no DEI lens or equity lens... so WHAT Are we doing to Follow the Exc order- what metrics are you using ?
Alicea Charamut
Louanne Cooley - I didn't realize that the NB adoption of the SU was official. Good news!
Leticia Colon
These are the communities that WE should be working in and are not working in.. They are already burdened and do not have time to beg us to help them on issue they have been disconnected from entirely . https://portal.ct.gov/DEEP/Environmental-Justice/Environmental-Justice-Communities
Leticia Colon
More key data on Equity and Climate Action https://efficiencyforall.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/GC3-EQUITY-Lens-CT-2.25.2020-.pdf
Louanne Cooley- UConn CIRCA
Yes! New Britian's stormwater utility is functional since summer. Hear a presentation on Tuesday at CT Assoc. of Flood managers meeting by NB officials.
Joanna Wozniak-Brown
I think a key goal for 2023 is for developing metrics for monitoring and evaluation of climate actions (both mitigation and adaptation)
Ashley Benitez, Climate Planning CTDEEP
We have to break for public comment.
Katharine Morris s
Public Comment: Bridgeport is a DECD distressed municipality, an environmental justice community, a vulnerable community. Similar to New Haven Long Whorf and Meriden, the South End of Bridgeport is particularly vulnerable to coastal flooding from the Long Island Sound and sea level rise and thus disasters from the ever intensifying climate crisis. Regarding Climate Resilient Infrastructure and Nature Based Solutions: Resilient Bridgeport has not been completely implemented due to fund thus leaving this vulnerable, distressed EJ community subject to disproportionate climate risk. Bassick High School is proposed to be built in the South End of Bridgeport WITHOUT public comment which makes it an EJ issue in of its self. Moreover, there are clear public health risks associated with proximity to affecting facilities. Putting Building Bassick High School in a FEMA Special Flood Hazard Area AE, in walking and breathing distance of two *designated* affecting facilities as well as two hydrogen fuel cells (part 1)
Louanne Cooley- UConn CIRCA
NB stressed community education and inclusion, process transprancy and why stormwater management benefits the community and how funding will be spent.
Leticia Colon
+++ Joanne Brown - metrics should include - how many People of color have solar, or job on solar, or a job in EE. Because Jobs save lives and make housing affordable.
Leticia Colon
What is equity? Equity starts by recognizing that there are disparities and inequities in living conditions. Some communities lack resources, lack political power, lack access to higher education, or have poor health outcomes. These examples place low-income communities and many communities of color at greater risk while limiting their capacity to adapt. Equity based Planning takes these disparities into account - This has not INTENIONALLY taken EJ communities into account.
Rebecca French, Climate Planning CT DEEP
Public comments can be added in the chat as well or submitted in writing to deep.climatechange@ct.gov within one week of the meeting and will be included with the meeting minutes.
Leticia Colon
+++ KAT - yes investing money in placing schools in a flood zone is the opposite of DEI efforts. It places those at RISK, directly in harms way. Thank you for raising that up as an issue.
Nicole Govert
Sustainable CT, along with the Nature Conservancy, offer a No Cost Assistant Program called Community Resilience Planning (CRB). Any town registered with SCT (129 so far) can participate in this program. TNC leads a program within a town where members of the town including municipal leaders can gather and identify strengths as well as vulnerabilities/risks in the town. The Nature Conservancy will them compile a complete report of the findings of the program..https://sustainablect.org/no-cost-assistance-programs/the-nature-conservancy
Katharine Morris s
Public Comment continued: all of which (four energy plants) run on fossil fuels and pollute the air, all without conducting the CEPA State Environmental Impact Assessment and City Environmental Impact Study, thus making the Seaside Park and the Long Island Sound vulnerable to excessive stormwater, a clear case of environmental racism. This is all being funded by the State of Connecticut as per DAS school grants. DEEP is still reviewing the final application and I urge the Department to actively choose the move in alignment with claimed EJ priorities and stop this from happening. Save Bassick Better. They students, teachers, and residents deserve better. (part 2)
Eduardo Marin
Amy Blaymore Paterson, CLCC
Well said, Denise! Thank you!
Katharine Morris s
reposting: Public comments can be added in the chat as well or submitted in writing to deep.climatechange@ct.gov within one week of the meeting and will be included with the meeting minutes
Katharine Morris s
my public comment is written above in two parts. thank you.
Leticia Colon
Also regarding Education as human right to know...the right to know is an EQUITY LENS, and while it seems this group is ok with education on EV's. I do not see loud support /equal to resilience and safety planning for serious impacts or even causes of climate change. THOSE at risk communities have the RIGHT to KNOW and to be prepared. Thank you for the presentation. May we next have collaboration. YES DEEP thank you for doing your work, and community leaders who are here unpaid- thank you for showing up and speaking up. Great work.
Lee Cruz
Thank you everyone.
Doris Johnson
Good night and thank you!