In 2022, SCIPP completed the cross-RISA collaborative project Connecting Climate Adaptation and Hazard Mitigation Planning in Climate Discourse-Sensitive Regions and learned the challenges that decision-makers face when implementing hazard mitigation and climate adaptation planning and action. For example, city and county officials and community members do not always understand what hazard mitigation is or why it benefits their community. There is also a misconception about how FEMA funding is obtained for a county or city, in which a hazard mitigation plan is a requirement when applying for certain FEMA funding. Unfortunately, many counties in Oklahoma do not have an active hazard mitigation plan.
To help with this misconception and promote the implementation of local hazard mitigation plans in Oklahoma, Darrian Bertrand, SCIPP’s Climate Assessment Specialist, collaborated with Kim Jenson at the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security on this 2-page resource that describes the benefits of local hazard mitigation plans and why they matter to communities. The document includes: a description of what hazard mitigation is and the hazards Oklahoma faces, costs of weather and climate events in Oklahoma, the benefits of hazard mitigation plans, examples of projects communities can implement with funding from the FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, cost savings from mitigation actions, and hazard mitigation success stories in Oklahoma. SCIPP plans to create this resource for other states in our region in the future.