LOS ANGELES — More than half of Los Angeles County residents — about 5.7 million people — live in communities deemed “highly exposed” to severe climate impacts now and through 2050, according to a study released today by the county’s Chief Sustainability Office. live.
According to the LA County Climate Vulnerability Assessment, imminent threats include extreme heat, wildfires, inland flooding, extreme rainfall, coastal flooding and drought.
The 141-page document found that an estimated 56% of county residents are vulnerable to such current times and projected changes in risk by 2050. Climate vulnerability as well as limited ability to withstand future threats.”
Those communities represent about 17% of the county’s population, the report said.
The researchers highlighted 47 “communities of concern” that face the twin dangers of “increased exposure to climate hazards and high susceptibility to negative impacts.”
Those communities were East Los Angeles, South Gate, Bellflower, Long Beach, San Pedro, Santa Clarita, Reseda, and Winnetca in the San Fernando Valley; and the Montebello, Westlake and Crenshaw districts; and North Lancaster, Hi Vista and Roosevelt in Antelope Valley.
Factors included in those assessments were homelessness and employment conditions such as warehousing jobs, where workers are usually indoors but still exposed to hazardous conditions such as heat.
The report states that the most severe climate impacts projected by 2050 include:
– Tenfold increase in extreme heat waves
– Doubling of population is vulnerable to extreme heat
– Mega-drought lasting several decades
– About 20% of properties are at risk of flooding during a major storm
– More extreme swings between drought and rain – potentially leading to flash floods and landslides
— seas rising 2.5 feet on local shorelines
— 40% increase in the areas where forest fires burn in the San Gabriel Mountains
Officials said the report will be used as a guide for future priorities under the county’s sustainability plan, which include increasing tree canopy in low-income urban areas and future infrastructure spending.
The county said the state government has provided nearly $15 billion over the next three years to help California communities prepare for extreme weather and climate-related disasters.
“By identifying the people and places most likely to suffer the worst impacts of climate change, and highlighting the urgency to make our communities more resilient to climate change, it helps county departments, many of our community partners and jurisdictions across the region. Beach will spur genuine action,” County Board of Supervisors Chair Hilda Solis said.
Supervisor Holly Mitchell said: “This assessment highlights the urgent need to do all we can to mitigate the imminent harm from climate change that will adversely affect low-income communities and communities of color. We have our basic There is an opportunity to actively strengthen the framework and apply the shared findings to our strategies to protect our most vulnerable neighborhoods and residents.
Supervisor Sheila Kuehl called the report “deeply disturbing” but said it “gives us an invaluable planning document with analysis that we need to do to reduce and avoid potentially negative impacts on our local county communities.” is required.”
Observer Janice Hahn said: “While we know that places such as Long Beach and San Pedro will face rising tides and that Bellflower and its surrounding communities will experience extreme heat, we also know how to reduce emissions and improve our health.” By taking action today to prepare communities, we can avoid the worst impacts. This report reminds us that we must renew our efforts.”
Supervisor Katherine Barger said: “Assessing the vulnerability and criticality of our electricity infrastructure was an interesting finding in this comprehensive study, which further emphasizes the need for partnership and collaboration in our efforts to strengthen grid reliability.”