Integrated Framework for an Urban Climate Adaptation Tool

Thursday, 17 December 2015: 10:50
102 (Moscone South)
Olufemi Omitaomu, Esther S Parish, Phil Nugent, Rui Mei, Linda Sylvester, Kathleen Ernst and Mariya Absar, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN, United States
Cities have an opportunity to become more resilient to future climate change through investments made in urban infrastructure today. However, most cities lack access to credible high-resolution climate change projection information needed to assess and address potential vulnerabilities from future climate variability. Therefore, we present an integrated framework for developing an urban climate adaptation tool (Urban-CAT). Urban-CAT consists of four modules. Firstly, it provides climate projections at different spatial resolutions for quantifying urban landscape. Secondly, this projected data is combined with socio-economic data using leading and lagging indicators for assessing landscape vulnerability to climate extremes (e.g., urban flooding). Thirdly, a neighborhood scale modeling approach is presented for identifying candidate areas for adaptation strategies (e.g., green infrastructure as an adaptation strategy for urban flooding). Finally, all these capabilities are made available as a web-based tool to support decision-making and communication at the neighborhood and city levels. In this paper, we present some of the methods that drive each of the modules and demo some of the capabilities available to-date using the City of Knoxville in Tennessee as a case study.