Resilient Richmond

Heavier spring flooding. Hotter, drier summers. Shifting growing seasons. These are just a few of the consequences of a warming climate. Unparalleled environmental change threaten local and global public health, species diversity, natural systems, and communities moving forward. With proper planning, we can adapt, and withstand the wide-ranging impacts of climate change that threaten our economy, health, and infrastructure.

Since 2019, Richmond has been part of Indiana University's Environment Resilience Institute's Resilience Cohort. Being part of this cohort has enabled the 2018 Greenhouse Gas inventory Project and the 2020 Climate Action Plan.

Heavier spring flooding. Hotter, drier summers. Shifting growing seasons. These are just a few of the consequences of a warming climate. Unparalleled environmental change threaten local and global public health, species diversity, natural systems, and communities moving forward. With proper planning, we can adapt, and withstand the wide-ranging impacts of climate change that threaten our economy, health, and infrastructure.

Since 2019, Richmond has been part of Indiana University's Environment Resilience Institute's Resilience Cohort. Being part of this cohort has enabled the 2018 Greenhouse Gas inventory Project and the 2020 Climate Action Plan.

Projects

Climate Action Plan (CAP)

CAPs serve as a roadmap for communities ready to reduce emissions, introduce energy efficiency programs, and join a global effort to combat climate change. Cities' needs vary widely, so no two CAPs look the same. Richmond has been fortunate enough to receive guidance from Indiana University on CAP best practices and continues to benefit from the collective knowledge of a handful of other Hoosier cities participating in annual sustainability programs. Climate Action Plans are also referred to as "Emission Reduction Plans" and "Sustainability Action Plans." Richmond's 2020 Comprehensive Plan directs the City to "Work with the Richmond Environmental Sustainability Commission to prepare a Citywide Sustainability Action Plan." The Commission hopes to present this plan to Common Council in 2021 for approval.

Youth-Led Climate Resolution

In 2019, seniors from Earlham College began the process of drafting a youth-led climate resolution to be presented to Richmond Common Council.  Members of the team gathered local data, interviewed local community leaders, researched other climate resolutions, and wrote the first draft of Indiana’s 9th youth-led climate resolution.  In 2021,local students revisited the draft, updated the language, surveyed 100 fellow students, met with council members, and ultimately were successful in seeing it passed by a 7-2 vote.  Resolutions such as this encourage Richmond to follow through with energy efficiency projects, appoint a sustainability coordinator, and adopt a climate action plan.  Many pieces of the resolution, such as those mentioned previously, are outlined as goals in the Richmond Rising Comprehensive Plan passed unanimously in 2020.

Click here to view the resolution.
Click here to view the presentation.

Hoosier Resilience Index

In 2020, Richmond participated in the Hoosier Resilience Index survey which evaluates a city’s level of preparedness for disasters and complications made more severe by climate change (rising temperatures and extreme rain events, for example).  Responses were gathered from those involved in energy production, emergency management, economic development, healthcare, and more.  Results were gathered together into a plan of action that Richmond can use to build resiliency in the face of a changing climate. Project recommendations from the 2020 Richmond Rising Comprehensive plan included “creating a resiliency plan that aligns community priorities and resources to better withstand hazardous / disaster-related events and recover more quickly.”  The resulting resiliency plan will be featured in the adaptation section of the Climate Action Plan.

Click here to view the Hoosier Resilience Index.

Beat the Heat Program

This program, made possible by Indiana University and the Office of Rural and Community Affairs, supports the salary of a Heat Relief Coordinator for two years.  Richmond was selected as one of two cities to receive over $120,000 in funding for the project. The coordinator will spend their time working with NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) and other partners to study the effects of rising temperatures on our community and implement heat relief strategies for vulnerable populations.

Click here for more information about the Beat the Heat Program.
Click here for more information about IU's environmental Resilience Institute's involvement.

IDEM Clean Community Challenge

Richmond is returning to the Clean Communities program after a brief break as one of five pilot communities! The Challenge helps governments pursue sustainability goals such as waste reduction and land conservation while offering technical support and recognition. Richmond is pursuing Bronze level designation for the Challenge and will eventually serve as a mentor/resource for other communities pursuing the Challenge.

Click here for a Clean Community Challenge Fact Sheet.

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Resources

Documents and Forms

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Locations

2380 Liberty Ave.

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