Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2017

Publication Title

Environment and Planning A: Economy and Space

ISSN

1472-3409

Volume

49

Issue

11

First Page

2628

Last Page

2648

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0308518X16688686

Abstract

Cities are key sites of action for adaptation to climate change. However, there are a wide variety of responses to hazards at the municipal level. Why do communities take adaptive action in the face of weather- and climate-related risk? We studied what cities are doing in response to existing natural hazards, such as floods, droughts, and blizzards as an analog for understanding the drivers of adaptive behavior toward climate change risks. We conducted a survey of 60 U.S. municipalities followed by six in-depth case studies in the intermountain west states of Colorado, Wyoming and Utah that regularly experience weather and climate extreme events. Our analysis shows that perception of risk and external factors such as planning requirements and availability of funding stand out as important drivers. Nevertheless, political action is rarely driven by a single factor or event. Overall, our results suggest that multiple factors interact or act in combination to produce an enabling environment for action in the face of weather- and climate-related risk.

Share

COinS