The Policy & Practice of Climate Change & Water

AGWA Featured on the "Science History Podcast"

The Science History Podcast with Frank von Hippel features monthly interviews on important moments in the history of science. In the latest episode, AGWA's Coordinator, Dr. John Matthews, is brought in to discuss some of the history of climate change research and water resources management, and peer a little into the future of a changing world. You can listen to the episode on the podcast website or directly below. Read More...
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | A High Probability of Uncertainty: How Do We Plan with Unknowns?

Nobody has data from the future - it hasn’t happened yet. But for centuries we’ve assumed that the past can predict the future. What if it can’t anymore? Will engineers and planners become consumed by inaction and climate uncertainty?

Climate Risk Informed Decision Analysis (CRIDA) is a new five-step water resources planning framework that helps address deep uncertainties associated with climatic, demographic and land-use change. CRIDA tackles the hardest part of climate adaptation: those times we need a hard number as engineers and economists, especially in parts of the world where may not have access to much data.

In this episode of ClimateReady, we are joined by three of the lead authors behind the recently-released publication. Drs. Guillermo Mendoza, Ad Jeuken, and John Matthews each lend their perspectives on how an engineer, a climate scientist, and an ecologist (respectively) came together to create a new vision of resilience in water management planning and decision making.

The CRIDA publication and additional resources are available at agwaguide.org/CRIDA. The guidebook is a co-publication of UNESCO IHP and the Integrated Center for International Water Resources Management (ICIWaRM), a UNESCO center in the United States.
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | Fight or Flight: Coastal Community Adaptation

In 2017 nearly 10 percent of U.S. citizens were affected by major disasters. Hurricane Harvey that year was estimated to have resulted in more than $120 billion alone to southeastern Texas. After a tradition of coastal management that paved over wetlands, channelized floodplains, and pushed poor communities into low-lying areas, many coastal communities now also experience sea level rise, saltwater intrusion, and increasingly severe weather.

In this episode of ClimateReady, we bring in author, professor, and photographer Elizabeth Rush to discuss her latest book Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore. We interview Elizabeth to find out more about vulnerable coastal communities around the United States — from New York to Louisiana to California. In Rising, climate change is no longer a problem of the future but an imminent threat. Through poignant stories, we hear how communities handle these realities on their own terms.

Following our main interview, we asked Elizabeth to read an excerpt from her book that would be especially relevant for our listeners. She examines the complexities around “risk” and arrives at some really insightful conclusions about how perceptions are shifting over time.
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | Ensuring Adaptation: Nature-Based Solutions to Reducing Risk

Infrastructure or ecosystems? Nature or economic development? Historically, those have been the tensions expressed about investing how we innovate, grow economies, reduce the impact of disasters, and alleviate poverty relative to preserving natural systems and ecological integrity.

Climate adaptation has shifted the terms of this long-standing debate. Traditional gray infrastructure is harder to design and maintain to be resilient. Nature-based solutions (NbS) work better in some situations, such as when we need more flexibility or face higher levels of uncertainty. Is a middle ground appearing?

In this episode of the ClimateReady Podcast, we bring in Dr. Elena Lopez Gunn to discuss her leadership to study, demonstrate, and ultimately quantify the insurance value of nature through a project she is leading known as NAIAD. This EU-funded project aims to expand the evidence base around NbS for reducing flood and drought risk while creating the business and financial frameworks necessary for operationalizing these approaches.

After our main interview Al Meghji, an MPA candidate at Cornell University, sends us a “Postcard from the Future” for a glimpse into the world of 2070 and some advice on how we can focus our efforts now to create a more equitable and livable society in the future. Stick around until the end for next year’s winning lotto numbers!
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | “C” is for Climate Change: Lessons About Climate Change Education

For most students, climate change is a topic they’ve heard about — maybe a topic they really care about. While nearly every discipline is affected in some way by climate change, the subject is often relegated to the natural sciences. How can we make sure that the next generation of professionals — and global citizens — can think critically about impacts and adaptation?

In this episode of ClimateReady, we bring in someone who quite literally wrote the book on that. Dr. Rob Wilby is a professor of hydroclimatic modeling at Loughborough University in the UK, and author of Climate Change in Practice: Topics for Discussion with Group Exercises. Rob tells us about the best ways to engage with students, even the most skeptical ones, in order to get them interested in the subject while providing them with the critical thinking and transdisciplinary skills they’ll need well after graduation. We also cover the role of continued education and the need for training outside of classroom settings.

Following the main interview we have another “Postcard from the Future.” This time we’ll hear from our very own ClimateReady co-host, Ingrid Timboe, in order to get a better understanding of the gaps in university training around water.
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | "Adapting funding to fund adaptation: Tales from Manila"

How can we know if a climate adaptation project will be effective and useful? Unlike mitigation and meeting emission reduction targets, adaptation measures are often open to interpretation. Yet institutions funding these efforts are expected to use standard evaluation criteria to distinguish between options and maximize impact and return on investment.

In this episode of the ClimateReady Podcast, we talk with a global expert from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) who also happens to have a background with the UNFCCC -- giving her policy, operational, and investment insights. Xianfu Lu is the ADB’s focal point for climate change adaptation and she schools us about how finance institutions are influencing adaptation projects, as well as how investment is shaped by climate and development policies. We also learn about the perception of climate change in Asia in contrast to other regions.

Following the main interview, we have a “Postcard from the Future” featuring Kathryn Pharr, a researcher at the University of Oxford, who brings us a message from a popular environmental superhero of the 1990s.
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | "Go with the Flow: Managed Rivers, Unmanaged Climate"

Freshwater ecosystems are in trouble. For centuries -- and until very recently -- rivers and ecosystems were always managed using history as a reference point. As we move into an era of uncertainty surrounding climate and hydrology, how should we think about ecosystem management in the future?

In this episode of ClimateReady, we meet with Dr. LeRoy Poff, a Professor in the Department of Biology at Colorado State University and Chair of its Ecology Graduate Program. LeRoy is a leading authority on aquatic ecology and lead author behind the seminal environmental flows (“eflows”) theory on river restoration and management. For the last 20 years, eflow science has been used to guide management and policy around ecosystem performance and natural flow regimes in regulated rivers. However, the underlying assumptions of this theory and practice are being tested by climate change. With an updated take on eflows, LeRoy explains how we must move beyond the natural flow regime to meet the challenges of a non-stationary and changing world.

Following the main interview, we have a “Postcard from the Future” from Stephanie Lyons, a climate, environment, and water consultant with a story from Vietnam.
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AGWA Launches Season 2 of "ClimateReady" Podcast

After a few months off, AGWA is happy to announce the launch of the second season of its ClimateReady Podcast. The first episode focuses on how indigenous peoples and women are taking on meaningful (and deserved) roles in international water and climate policy discussions. We discuss the topic of Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and the ways that island nations in the Pacific are adapting to climate change. Listen below, then make sure to subscribe and leave your reviews wherever you get your podcasts!
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The ClimateReady Podcast | Looking Back at Season 1

With Season 1 of the #ClimateReady Podcast now wrapped up, it's time to take a look back at all the great episodes. If you haven't already done so, make sure to listen, rate, and review!

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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | Are We Tapped Out? How Urban Water Utilities Are Adapting to New Impacts

You can now listen to the latest episode of the ClimateReady Podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud, or AGWA's Knowledge Platform.
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Billions of people worldwide depend on municipal water utilities to deliver clean drinking water and treat their waste. There’s a reason that the word “utility” in English means both an agency or business that provides public services and something that performs consistently, even automatically. What happens when the utility of a utility is under threat? Water utilities are arguably what makes modern cities possible, supplying clean water, treating sewage and industrial waste, securing urban areas as centers of economic growth rather than as cesspools of ill health and disease. Consider Cape Town, South Africa. A city often compared with San Francisco in the US for its optimism, culture, and lifestyle. Cape Town is about a month away from day zero -- the term they use for when their reservoir will absolutely run out of water.

In this episode of ClimateReady, we talk to civil engineer Divindy Grant to learn about a project led by Mott MacDonald to develop resilience standards for water utilities. Tune in to hear more about the ways in which these water service providers are working to ensure that taps continue to flow and toilets continue to flush even as floods, droughts, and sea level rise become more commonplace.
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Make sure to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and leave a review to tell us how we're doing! Happy listening! Read More...
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | New Approaches to Managing Risk: Climate Adaptation in Zambia

You can now listen to the latest episode of the ClimateReady Podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud, or AGWA's Knowledge Platform. The latest episode focuses on the application of a new bottom-up adaptation approach known as Collaborative Risk Informed Decision Analysis, or CRIDA, to increase resilience to drought for a water treatment facility in Zambia. The main interview comes from Marc Tkach of Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). Marc discusses the need for adaptation as a means of ensuring MCC's goals of enabling growth to reduce poverty. You'll learn more about the new CRIDA approach as well as the Decision Scaling and Adaptation Pathways methodologies for robust and flexible water management planning.

Make sure to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and leave a review to tell us how we're doing! Happy listening! Read More...
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New Episode of #ClimateReady Podcast | Designing & Planning for Resilience in Water Infrastructure

You can now listen to the latest episode of the ClimateReady Podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud, or AGWA's Knowledge Platform. The latest episode focuses on decisions around planning, design, and investments in water infrastructure. The main interview comes from Dr. Patrick Ray of the Univ. of Cincinnati and UMass-Amherst's Hydrosystems Research Group. You'll hear about the concept behind bottom-up approaches to climate adaptation, the World Bank's Decision Tree Framework, and work being done in Mexico City and elsewhere to assess and address long-term climatic and non-climatic risks to water systems and infrastructure.

Make sure to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and leave a review to tell us how we're doing! Happy listening! Read More...
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New Episode of AGWA's "ClimateReady" Podcast - Climate Finance & Green Bonds

The latest episode of AGWA's ClimateReady Podcast is now out! This episode focuses on the critical role of climate finance in achieving the SDGs as well as the need for standardization within the green bonds market. It features an interview with Anna Creed of Climate Bonds Initiative. In 2017 alone the green bond issuances topped $100bn USD. That's one way that we can help fund a sustainable future! But, there is still need to scale up investments in climate bonds within the nearly $100 trillion broader bond market. Take a listen below to find out more! And, don't forget to check out other episodes on AGWA's Knowledge Platform and subscribe through SoundCloud or iTunes!



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Reflections from COP22: AGWA Featured in OOSKAnews Podcasts

In November, OOSKAnews attended and reported on the UN Climate Change Conference (COP22), convened by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and hosted by the Kingdom of Morocco in the city of Marrakesh. OOSKAnews met with a number of "water community" participants and attendees in the context of efforts to promote the water agenda in the global climate discussion. The resulting podcasts include interviews with two of AGWA's own: Karin Lexén of SIWI and AGWA's Coordinator John Matthews.





To view the other OOSKAnews interviews, visit https://www.ooskanews.com/story/2017/01/un-climate-change-conference-water-focus_174177.
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