Climate Dashboard

​Water & Science Administration Climate Adaptation Priorities

The MDE Water and Science Administration (WSA) is committed to account for the impacts of climate change within its routine regulatory functions. Climate change negatively impacts the environment by intensifying extreme weather events like temperature, precipitation, wind, and storm surges. WSA is updating its programs to better handle these challenges, with a focus on communities affected by environmental justice concerns. To help expedite progress, WSA has identified four priority areas under which several tangible action items are being undertaken. To foster communications and promote accountability on these activities, WSA has developed the climate dashboard presented below.

WSA's four priority areas tie together the fundamental elements needed to expedite climate change adaptation and build resilience in Maryland's water sector.  These four priority areas are:

  1. Science & Planning: Harness science and planning to adjust water programs and policy decisions, ensuring they account for changing climate conditions such as rising sea levels, increased rainfall, and prolonged droughts. 

  2. Climate Smart Water Permits: Review regulatory approval procedures and permits to ensure they support the safe and sustainable management of water resources and infrastructure in the context of a changing climate. 

  3. Green, Blue, & Traditional Infrastructure: Accelerate the implementation of green, blue, and traditional infrastructure to enhance resilience. These assets are crucial for maintaining clean water, preventing flooding, and supporting the health and vitality of our communities. 

  4. Emergency Preparedness & Response: Periodically update and exercise response procedures to safeguard public health, water resources, and critical infrastructure from increasingly frequent and severe emergency incidents due to climate change.​


​​​​​Climate Dashboard

​The Water and Science Administration's overall progress toward meeting climate related goals across the four priority areas is presented below.



These priority areas support elements of the Climate Solutions Now Act of 2022 concerning communities that are disproportionately affected by climate change. The action items are aligned with Maryland's Next Generation Climate Adaptation Plan. The action items promote green and blue infrastructure, which align with the vision advocated by the Green and Blue Infrastructure Advisory Policy Commission.  They help control flooding, foster nutrient reductions in support of Maryland's Chesapeake Bay Watershed Implementation Plan, mitigate heat, and serve as natural emissions sinks that are part of Maryland's Climate Pathways strategy to reduce greenhouse gas. Other activities not reflected in this Climate Dashboard are described in WSA's section of MDE's Annual Climate Change Report​ in accordance with §2–1305​ of the Environment Article.​​​ 

Climate Resili​ence Priority Areas

Priority Area 1​​: Science and Planning
Harness science and planning to integrate climate resilience into MDE’s water resource management responsibilities such as ensuring the safety of drinking water, maintaining dam safety, managing stormwater, controlling erosion and sediment, and overseeing flood management.​

 
​​​For More Details: ​Priority Area 1: Science and Planning

Prio​rity Area 2:  Climate Smart Water Permits

Review MDE’s water regulatory approval instruments -- including permits, authorizations, and licenses --  to ensure they promote resilience to climate change impacts.​​​ The graph outlines three levels of review, each representing a progressively thorough scrutiny. Higher-level reviews require more time to complete. More detailed descriptions of these review levels are provided in the document linked below the graph.​

 


Priority A​rea 3: Green, Blue, and Traditional Infrastructure

Accelerate the scale and pace of implementing green, blue, and traditional infrastructure. This will build resilience to climate change stresses, mitigate pollution, and enhance natural habitat.​

     


Priority Area 4: E​​​mergency Preparedness
Bolster emergency preparedness and response activities to better avoid, respond to, and reduce impacts of extreme events -- such as floods and heat waves -- that are becoming more frequent and severe due to climate change​.

 



Please direct questions or comments to matthew.rowe@maryland.gov

Human Trafficking GET HELP

National Human Trafficking Hotline - 24/7 Confidential

1-888-373-7888 233733 More Information on human trafficking in Maryland

Customer Service Promise

The State of Maryland pledges to provide constituents, businesses, customers, and stakeholders with friendly and courteous, timely and responsive, accurate and consistent, accessible and convenient, and truthful and transparent services.

Take Our Survey

Help Stop Fraud in State Government

The Maryland General Assembly’s Office of Legislative Audits operates a toll-free fraud hotline to receive allegations of fraud and/or abuse of State government resources. Information reported to the hotline in the past has helped to eliminate certain fraudulent activities and protect State resources.

More Information