This old saying perfectly describes my realization of how special the Independence Trail was for our community. Lighting struck repeatedly throughout the night on August 17th, igniting dry fuel in our foothills refuge of Nevada City and across the state of California.
Mitigation is the act of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to slow the effects of climate change. Examples of mitigation include adopting and implementing an Energy Action Plan, investing in carbon sequestration and other projects relating to energy efficiency and renewable energy.
Adaptation is preparing for the current and projected regional impacts of climate change to reduce their intensity. Examples of adaptation include reducing tree mortality, creating drought-tolerant communities and ecosystems, and building fire breaks.
Resilience is the ability to withstand the impacts of climate change. Examples of climate resilience include eliminating damage to infrastructure and homes from extreme flooding through green infrastructure, forest restoration, and flood walls.
Climate Impacts in the Sierra
The general decrease in the Sierra snowpack in recent years, projected to continue in the coming decades, will continue to have a significant impact on downstream users. Warmer temperatures cause the snowpack to melt at a quicker rate rather than seep into the ground, both failing to replenish California’s critical groundwater supply and creating greater flood risk in the region.
Additionally, frequent and severe wildfires have led to many communities experiencing hazardous air quality conditions and have imposed great costs on Californians. With warming temperatures resulting in decreased snowpack, continued drought, greater flood risk, and more numerous and damaging wildfires becoming the new “normal”, we need to act now to protect California communities and the resources they depend on.