UNH released two reports today – one for Southern NH and one for Northern NH – that are intended to help municipalities and regions plan for their futures with warmer temperatures and more “extreme precipitation events” over the next few decades. For more information, and to download the report, GO HERE.
We have mentioned elsewhere on this site that while we still need to plan for growth and development, it is becoming increasingly important to plan for change. Higher temperatures in the summer will mean increased stress on our health, our crops and gardens, and our energy sources. More “extreme precipitation” weather events may mean, among other consequences, more flooding, greater risk of tree damage (and subsequent damage to power lines, houses, vehicles and even people) and higher plow budgets.
But while much of this may fall under town government to address, we recommend that the entire community be involved in conversations around specific issues. As citizens, we need to be part of the solutions – we are are all in this together. Thinking together about such questions as “How might we be sure our older neighbors who live alone are safe and warm during or after a blizzard?” How might we be proactive about protecting our historic buildings?” “What can we do to help, as a community, those who live/have businesses on flood-prone properties that may suffer severe damage in the next big storm?” “What can we as a community do to prioritize needs should we lose electricity/power/heat/roads … and how to address them?”
And, as said earlier, these are challenges, but they are also opportunities to think in a new way about what you want for your own town or neighborhood, to think about everyone who lives there, and what you can do to deal with a changing future.
We are interested in your stories – what are the challenges you are talking about, how are you talking about them, and what are you proposing?