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SB-168 Climate change: Chief Climate Resilience Officer.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 04/11/2019 09:00 PM

Amended  IN  Senate  April 11, 2019
Amended  IN  Senate  March 25, 2019


Senate Bill No. 168

Introduced by Senator Wieckowski
(Coauthor: Senator Stern)
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Cristina Garcia and Eduardo Garcia)

January 28, 2019

An act to amend Section 71358 of, and to add Section 71353 to, the Public Resources Code, relating to climate change.


SB 168, as amended, Wieckowski. Climate change: Chief Climate Resilience Officer.
Existing law establishes the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program to be administered by the Office of Planning and Research to coordinate regional and local efforts with state climate adaptation strategies to adapt to the impacts of climate change, as specified. Existing law establishes an advisory council, as specified, to support the goals of the Office of Planning and Research related to climate change.
This bill would establish the Chief Climate Resilience Officer in the Office of Planning and Research to serve as the statewide lead for planning and coordination of climate adaptation policy and implementation in California, and would specify the duties of the chief officer. The bill would make the chief officer, or the chief officer’s designee, a member of the advisory council and would designate the chief officer, or the chief officer’s designee, as the chair of the advisory council. The bill would include additional expertise members of the advisory council are to have. The bill would specify that members of the advisory council serve staggered 4-year terms, except as provided.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


 (a) The Legislature finds and declares the following:
(1) The state has been a leader in climate mitigation efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Now, and in the coming years, it is critical for California and the global community to continue and intensify those efforts in order to avoid the most severe impacts from a changing climate. However, because the global climate system changes slowly, impacts are ongoing and will inevitably worsen. In order to address the challenges posed by a changing climate, the state must invest in building resiliency and strengthening adaptation efforts at the state, regional, and local levels using the best available science and scale those investments using the best available policy, financial, and regulatory tools and mechanisms.
(2) To have a cohesive and comprehensive response to climate change impacts, the state must have integrated planning with coordinated strategies across state, regional, and local governments and agencies designed to reduce the costs of future climate disaster and protect local, state, and regional infrastructure assets, including natural infrastructure systems.
(b) It is the intent of the Legislature, therefore, that adaptation strategies to build resiliency against the risks and impacts of climate change be integrated across government into all state, regional, and local policies, projects, and permitting processes to ensure a resilient California.

SEC. 2.

 Section 71353 is added to the Public Resources Code, to read:

 (a) There is hereby established the Chief Climate Resilience Officer, hereafter referred to as the chief officer, in the office. The chief officer shall be appointed by the Governor and serve at the pleasure of the Governor. The chief officer shall serve as the statewide lead for the planning and coordination of climate adaptation policy implementation in California. The duties of the chief officer shall include, but are not limited to, all of the following:
(1) Develop guidance documents for the integration of adaptation and resiliency into the state’s sustainability roadmap, into Safeguarding California Implementation Action Plans, and into local general plans updates to provide guidance for state and local agencies to plan for a changing climate. This guidance shall incorporate projected economic and fiscal impacts, as applicable.
(2) Coordinate with the Natural Resources Agency and the State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission on climate change assessment.
(3) Develop and track metrics to measure the efficacy of adaptation and resiliency at the state level.
(4) Develop and mobilize strategies to build partnerships between all levels of government and the private sector, where appropriate.
(5) Identify, in consultation with the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, vulnerable communities and regions, publish and develop, as needed, tools for vulnerability assessments, publish tools for addressing those vulnerabilities, and provide state, regional, and local agencies with guidance implementing these analytical approaches as related to planning, investment, and decisionmaking, as applicable.
(6) (A) Determine whether entities required by Section 65042 of the Government Code are in compliance with the State Environmental Goals and Policy Report required by Article 5 (commencing with Section 65041) of Chapter 1.5 of Division 1 of Title 7 of the Government Code.
(B) Publish, on the office’s internet website, recommendations on how entities identified as out of compliance pursuant to subparagraph (A) can achieve compliance.
(7) Make recommendations to the Strategic Growth Council, established pursuant to Section 75121, on how to better facilitate state employees’ ability to do climate adaptation work across agencies and departments.
(8) Develop, in coordination with relevant state and private entities, climate adaptation- and resiliency-focused recommendations for the prevention of, and recovery from, natural disasters.
(b) The chief officer shall perform the duties specified in subdivision (a) in consultation with the advisory council established pursuant to Section 71358.

SEC. 3.

 Section 71358 of the Public Resources Code is amended to read:

 (a) An advisory council to the office is hereby established. The advisory council shall be comprised of the Chief Climate Resilience Officer, or the chief officer’s designee, and members from a range of disciplines, in order to provide scientific and technical support, and from regional and local governments and entities. Through the Chief Climate Resilience Officer, the advisory council and staff shall facilitate coordination among state, regional, and local agency efforts to adapt to the impacts of climate change.
(b) Members of the advisory council shall have expertise in the intersection of climate change or climate science and areas that include, but need not be limited to, any of the following:
(1) Public health.
(2) Environmental quality.
(3) Environmental justice.
(4) Agriculture.
(5) Transportation and housing.
(6) Energy.
(7) Natural resources and water.
(8) Planning.
(9) Recycling and waste management.
(10) Local or regional government.
(11) Tribal issues.
(12) Emergency services and public safety.
(13) Procurement.
(14) Innovative finance and life-cycle asset management.
(c) The Chief Climate Resilience Officer, or the chief officer’s designee, shall serve as chair of the advisory council.
(d) (1) Except for the Chief Climate Resilience Officer, or the chief officer’s designee, members of the advisory council shall serve staggered terms of four years.
(2) During the first meeting of the advisory council taking place on or after January 1, 2020, one-half of the members of the advisory council shall be chosen by lot to serve a two-year term.
(e) The advisory council shall meet with the office as needed, but not fewer than three times a year.