The Santa Clara Valley Water District's ability to provide clean, reliable water supply, natural flood protection, and water resources stewardship may be challenged in the future by the potential of warmer temperatures, changing precipitation and runoff patterns, reduced snow pack and rising sea levels. Managing climate change-related uncertainties, vulnerabilities, or risks is critical to fulfill the district's mission. The district has been addressing these risks and working on reducing its contributions to climate change through greenhouse reduction efforts since 2008. All of our efforts are being reviewed and new strategies will be added through the development of a Climate Change Action Plan to be completed in 2019.
Key components of the district's responses to climate change include:
- A wide array of strategies to adapt to climate change to reduce risks to water supply reliability, flooding and environmental stewardship. Efforts include: advancing water conservation and recycled water; increasing water supply flexibility; addressing rising sea levels (link to SF Shoreline project); supporting ecosystem functions and habitat restoration.
- A set of progressive policies adopted by our Board of Directors, including an explicit target for carbon neutrality (Ends goal 4.3) and a climate divestment policy (Executive Limitation 4.9.3).
- A systematic carbon reduction framework within the district's ISO 9000/14001 Quality and Environmental Management System.
- Climate Change Portal: a website to disseminate information on water-related climate change issues.
- Development of a comprehensive Climate Change Action Plan by 2019.
- Updating the District Board and the public on climate change.
- Collaborating and networking with other agencies.