How State Governments Can Help Communities Invest in Climate Resilience

Wed, Oct 14, 2020 1:15 PM – 2:45 PM EDT

See the slides here

Also here is a link to the series of reports Innovation Network for Communities (INC) is doing with Boston University’s Institute for Sustainable Energy on the COVID/city climate. John Cleveland references this project in the webinar.

The challenge of climate resilience is mostly local. But local governments don’t have all of the capacities, including financial wherewithal, to cope alone during the next decades. States have the ability and responsibility to make a difference in building local climate resilience. They reap the rewards of improved quality of life, reduced disaster impacts, and increased economic stability for their constituents. In this interactive session, state and local leaders from around the country and resilience finance experts will share their insights. 

  • What financial strategies can state governments use to help local governments invest in climate resilience?
  • What resources do states have to fund and finance resilience?
  • How can states expand federal pre-disaster funding?
  • What can states do to enable local governments to raise local funds for resilience projects?
  • How can private investment in local resilience be increased?

Webinar sponsored by Climate Resilience Consulting and Innovation Network for Communities, and Urban Resilience to Extremes Sustainability Research Network.

Research supported by the Summit Foundation.


Joyce Coffee, LEED AP, is founder and President of Climate Resilience Consulting, a social enterprise that works with clients to create practical strategies that enhance markets and communities through adaptation to climate change.
Coffee has 25 years of leadership experience in government, private, nonprofit, philanthropic and academic sectors. She has worked with over 200 institutions to create and implement climate-related resilience strategies. Specific areas of emphasis include resilience strategy, resilience finance, resilience measurement and social equity. She is an appointed director or chair of over ten nonprofit boards and initiatives.

John Cleveland
John Cleveland is President and a co-founder of the Innovation Network for Communities (INC), a national non-profit organization focused on social innovation and large-scale change, especially in the ways that communities are responding to climate change –reducing GHG emissions and strengthening resilience. 

John is also the Executive Director for the Boston Green Ribbon Commission (, a network of business and civic leaders supporting the implementation of the City of Boston Climate Action Plan.
Nuin-Tara Key.
Nuin-Tara Key is Deputy Director for Climate Resilience at OPR and Chair of the Technical Advisory Council for the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program. Prior to joining OPR, Nuin-Tara co-founded an international initiative on community-based climate action.
Shaun O’Rourke
Shaun O’Rourke is Director of Stormwater and Resiliency at Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank and is Governor Gina Raimondo’s Chief Resilience Officer (CRO) for the State of Rhode Island. As CRO, Shaun led the development of the state’s first climate resilience action strategy, Resilient Rhody, and leads implementation efforts.
Tom Jacobs
Tom Jacobs has led environmental policy and planning efforts for the Mid-America Regional Council, Kansas City’s regional and metropolitan planning organization, since 2001. Tom is currently helping to lead the development of a regional climate action plan.


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