Public officials and scientists are starting to say that adaptation to climate change is just as important as trying to stem climate change. One way to adapt is to embrace smart growth principles that reduce energy usage, according to this article.
During two recent conferences in California, experts said adaptation is an area where land use planners and policymakers can make a real difference. And during a forum elsewhere, the leader of King County, Washington, urged adaptation to a changing climate as crucial.
"There is little question that the adaptation question will soon dominate planning and engineering discussions in beach towns and river towns throughout California. The threat of rising water levels is probably going to lead to new and very expensive engineering solutions such as levees and sea walls – and, in some cases, calls to move buildings, people, and communities from harm's way."
Meanwhile, smart growth principles such as higher densities, transit and mixed-uses are being promoted as adaptations because they reduce energy usage and protect natural areas for carbon absorption and resource management.