Climate Change: Adaptation, Mitigation, and Resilience

The effects of climate change are already palpable and society will be coping with its consequences for centuries to come. An effective response to climate change requires urgent action at the local, national, and international levels. ELI is working with partners around the world to develop legal, policy, and institutional solutions.

U.S.-Based Work

Disaster Mitigation & Resilience: ELI’s Land and Biodiversity Program, in partnership with The University of North Carolina’s Institute for the Environment, has created practical, implementable resources to help communities nationwide improve community resilience:

  • Natural Hazard Mitigation Planning: ELI, in collaboration with the University of North Carolina Institute for the Environment, is working to facilitate greater collaboration between hazard mitigation planners and wetland and wildlife conservation managers to strengthen management and protection of vital wetland and floodplain habitats.
  • Floodplain Buyouts and Community Resilience: We have developed practical, implementable recommendations for how communities across the country can optimize use and management of buyout properties to provide habitat and improve community resilience.

Nature-Based Resilience: Working with the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean (MARCO), ELI created Developing Wetland Restoration Priorities for Climate Risk Reduction and Resilience in the MARCO Region, a detailed assessment of methods to identify, conserve, and restore wetlands for protection of communities and ecosystems in the face of rapid climate change.

Sea-Level Rise Adaptation: ELI reviewed legal risks for cities in the San Diego region, in Legal Risk Analysis for Sea Level Rise Adaptation Strategies in San Diego. This report concisely summarizes the legal risks and administrative hurdles associated with different adaptation strategies in order to facilitate informed decision-making.

Green Infrastructure: In Green Infrastructure for Chesapeake Stormwater Management: Legal Tools for Climate Resilient Siting, ELI explains how stormwater laws and regulations can help communities in Maryland and Virginia reduce risk from climate change impacts.

ELI collaborated with Amigos Bravos to develop workshops and fact sheets on green infrastructure. Although the fact sheets were designed for communities in the Albuquerque, NM, area, they are broadly applicable for communities in other climates.

International Work

ELI is developing a climate resilience regime in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Working with the Ministry of Energy, ELI is helping the nation revise its environmental code to facilitate integration of climate change into existing strategies and providing assistance in the development of the Kazakh National Adaptation Plan.

To support the progress of countries serious about meeting their goals under the Paris Climate Agreement, ELI created a straightforward model framework for a national-level, climate change law, taking the Paris Agreement as its starting point. The model law has been translated into the six UN languages (plus Portuguese) to facilitate its use around the world.

ELI is also:

If you are interested in learning more about our Climate Mitigation, Adaptation, and Resilience work, please contact Rebecca L. Kihslinger, Senior Science and Policy Analyst; James M. McElfish, Jr., Senior Attorney & Director of ELI's Sustainable Use of Land Program, or Carl Bruch, Senior Attorney; Director, International Programs.