On November 9, 2021, over 100 leaders and supporters of climate resilient communities joined the Upper Valley Adaptation Workgroup (UVAW) for a virtual Climate Migration Forum. The event featured presentations from a variety of organizations and valuable input from community members working together to plan for a just, prosperous, and resilient future with climate change migration. UVAW co-chair Erich Osterberg, Associate Professor of Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College, facilitated the forum and expertly guided the discussion to illustrate the challenges and opportunities presented by this growing reality.
The forum began with a presentation by Elena Mihaly (Vice President and Senior Attorney, CLF Vermont) who laid out the reasons the Upper Valley and other rural New England regions rank in the top of the EPA’s Cumulative Resilience Screening Index, and what climate effects our region can expect. From there the event featured Meghan Butts (Executive Director, UVLSRPC) discussing the planning process surrounding climate migration in our current and evolving contexts, Erika Hoffman-Kiess (Executive Director, GMEDC) addressing how climate adaptation can be an opportunity for economic development, and Dr. Jay Shafer (Co-Founder, President, and CEO of Northview Weather) describing climate migration through the perspective of a meteorologist and technology entrepreneur. The rest of the meeting was largely devoted to hearing from attendees, especially in small-group “Zoom rooms” and chat Q&As, with much of their commentary and questions addressed by all the speakers to the forum as a whole. UVAW and its partners will use the forum’s findings to inform research, future programming, and project development.
- Stay tuned for more from Upper Valley Adaptation Workgroup. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the group’s mailing list.
- Sign up for the Upper Valley Climate Action Discussion List, an email-based service allowing anyone in the Upper Valley to share and discuss opportunities related to local climate action.
- Join the Upper Valley Climate Change Leadership Academy (2CLA), a six session program that helps participants of all ages and backgrounds embrace opportunities to be local leaders in addressing climate change, including support developing a community-based project. Applications are due in January.
- Join your local planning, zoning, energy, or conservation committee
- Contact your Regional Planning Commission to learn about relevant conversations happening in your community right now
- Spark your own conversations about climate change migration and keep in touch