5 approaches
to help Justice40 communities adapt

ICF has identified five approaches to create effective, targeted plans to help disadvantaged communities prepare for the effects of extreme heat:

1. Get specific

By assessing community-level risk and identifying variables such as income and health, planners can better understand who is disadvantaged and what support they need to mitigate climate risks.

Actionable approach

A National Climate Service, much like the National Weather Service, could forecast climate-related risks, specific to each community.

2. Solicit input

Authentically engaging communities that have been historically marginalized is an important step in understanding their specific heat-related challenges and potential adaptation strategies.

Actionable approach

Before deciding on locations of cooling centers, invite community members to offer ideas on which buildings they find convenient, comfortable, and trustworthy.

3. Develop a plan

When state and local plans incorporate strategies to help Justice40 communities adapt to climate risks, they’re more likely to meet criteria to secure Justice40 funding.

Actionable approach

Local planning efforts can become valuable climate change adapters, including projects related to restoring the tree canopy or adapting public libraries as cooling centers.

4. Access funding

Record levels of funding are available for climate plans. Learn where to find it and how to consolidate funding streams to achieve a single goal.

Actionable approach

In addition to the BIL and IRA, federal programs and grants offer funds to support public health, emergency preparedness, and community organizations.

5. Prioritize the vulnerable

When implementing city- and state-wide plans, focus efforts on vulnerable communities who will be disproportionately affected by climate change.

Actionable approach

Use ClimateSight projections to identify the needs of high-risk populations and assess which plans are best suited to help those communities prepare for rising heat.