Presentation on theme: "Bryon Backenson New York State Department of Health"— Presentation transcript:
1 Bryon Backenson New York State Department of Health Response Planning for Climate Change in New York New York State Department of Health Extreme Weather Planning & Response GuideBryon BackensonNew York State Department of Health
2 Planning for the Anticipated but Unknown Climate change refers to any significant change in the measures of climate lasting for an extended period of time. In other words, climate change includes major changes in temperature, precipitation, or wind patterns, among other effects, that occur over several decades or longer.Planning for the Anticipated but Unknown
3 New York State StudiesNew York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)Conducted a research study and provided a report analyzing Climate Change Adaptation in NYSThe group developed projections for NYS based on 16 global climate models and 3 emission scenariosThese findings were then applied to 8 sectors: Water Resources, Coastal Zones, Ecosystems, Agriculture, Energy, Transportation, Telecommunications, and Public Health
4 Key Findings for Public Health Temperatures will facilitate extreme weather events on their own (extreme cold, extreme hot)Increased potential for extreme events (e.g. hurricanes)Increased stagnant air events - expanded durations of ozoneIncreased rates of mortalityExtreme precipitation - increased flooding potentialsDiminished water and food supply qualityInterruption of service delivery - healthcare, etc.Increased respiratory illness related to flooding conditions (e.g. Mold)Air Pollution/AeroallergensImpacts to air quality
5 How Do We Plan for Extremes? In 2012 the Office of Health Emergency Preparedness pulled together an internal workgroup of Subject Matter Experts:Environmental HealthEpidemiologyPublic InformationEmergency planning & responseKey considerations for the Extreme Weather PlanWhat plans currently exist? (e.g. Coastal Storm Plan, All Hazards Plan)How would this plan fit into the existing planning universe?How do we define response actions for Extreme Weather?We wanted to avoid duplication of existing plans, no utility in recreating the wheel
6 How Do We Plan for Extremes? NYSDOH currently maintains an All Hazards based Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan, which includes the Department’s Incident Management System PlanIMS is the Department’s adaptation of Incident Command and establishes the methods, roles and responsibilities for the department in ALL emergenciesThe Extreme Weather Planning & Response Guide sits as an Appendix in the IMS AnnexThe Plan:Defines extreme weather events in New YorkIdentifies the Department’s role in a defined weather eventOutlines the Department’s actionsA key determination is that most response action would revolve around winter storms that do not have bigger response plans (Coastal storm plan vs no Nor’easter Plans)Much of the Department’s response relies on the needs of Local JurisdictionsThe identification of the different extreme weather events serves as “connect the dots” - Event, what is a result, what are the secondary events, what are the recovery concerns, and what are the potential department actions based on the local needs OR a State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) activation.
8 The work group first defined Extreme Weather Events using National Weather Service and NOAA This also included identifying weather conditions specific to New York State -Lake Effect Snow Watches & WarningsDuring the course of defining the different weather events the group found that there are specific warnings developed specifically for New York State.
9 Primary Response actions were defined, including Departmental resources often used in an emergency The group defined by EVENT TYPE potential consequences and recovery concerns as well as Potential Secondary Eventse.g. Hurricane High Winds and Flooding Power outagesPrimary Response actions are those responsibilities that are already defined in Public Health Law, in Executive Laws (e.g. Article 2B), or defined in existing plans.In order to tease out additional roles and response actions, the group used a grid of the various weather related circumstances - and then the group worked to define what the event’s consequences were and then what were the initial primary recovery concerns. As part of this the group also established secondary events that were consequences of the primary weather event. E.g. A Hurricane causes mass destruction (as we saw in Hurricane Sandy), High Winds and Flooding are primary components of a Hurricane, a power outage would be a secondary consequence.One note: a secondary consequence is not to say lesser or less severe - rather just an additional consequence that comes with additional response actions and recovery concerns.
10 Plan Activation & Moving Forward The NYSDOH Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan is formally updated every 4 years, however, portions are updated as neededHurricane Sandy 2012Primary plans used for response were the NYC Coastal Storm Plan and the NYS Response and Recovery AnnexesWhile the Extreme Weather Planning & Response Guide was not formally implemented, the public messaging included in the plan is a primary response roleMore on Sandy tomorrow…The plan has been used in 3 additional EOC activations for severe winter weathere.g. Winter Storm NEMO, January 2013One primary support role that the Department plays in all severe weather is that of public messaging and providing information and materials to local jurisdictions.Additional roles such as disease surveillance and food and water protection are also roles that are built into public health laws and regulatory actions.
11 What About More Insidious Impacts from Climate Change? Department preparedness/awarness and “culture change”Do other areas of DOH know about impacts of climate change?Sometimes get lost in the shuffle, with much emphasis on disasters, severe weather events, etc.Changes are perhaps slow to be noticed, but will persist for years and tax the (already shrinking) public health infrastructureChanging ranges of zoonotic and arthropod-borne diseases due to impacts of climate on their vectors, hosts, and reservoirsImpacts on foodborne and waterborne diseases due to changes in agriculture, food handling, use of HVAC equipment, etc.Need to plan for these as wellMay start as disaster or emergencyMany coupled with increases in technology, leading to increased burdenOne primary support role that the Department plays in all severe weather is that of public messaging and providing information and materials to local jurisdictions.Additional roles such as disease surveillance and food and water protection are also roles that are built into public health laws and regulatory actions.
12 Questions ?Thanks to all those who contributed to these slides and this work: Sarah-Anne Roberts, Millie Eidson, Kathleen Clancy, Ed Fitzgerald, Shao Lin, Hwa-Gan ChangNYS Office of Heath Emergency Preparedness