Awareness of Effects of Climate Change

Understand and build awareness of the effects of changing climate and ocean conditions on Puget Sound.
The effects of a changing climate on Puget Sound can be seen through increasing air temperatures, longer frost-free seasons, sea level rise, a potential increase in heavy rainfall events, climate migration of individuals relocating to the region from elsewhere in the United States or abroad, and more. To build our collective resilience to current and future changes, we must foster a greater scientific understanding and build awareness of not only these effects, but also what we can do in response. Strategic education and empowerment campaigns, climate change research to better understand risks, and climate policy advocacy and implementation, are a necessary and foundational step in taking climate action.

Efforts to foster scientific understanding and build awareness and action are aimed at creating large-scale and long-term behavior change to increase the resilience of the Puget Sound ecosystem which includes residents, visitors, climate migrants, and youth and the economy. Actions must address frontline communities most impacted by climate change. This strategy focuses on research and monitoring climate change impacts on the socio-ecological system (including human holistic health and wellbeing); developing targeted engagement and behavior change campaigns; supporting public and private initiatives; and supporting and implementing recommendations as detailed by the Washington Climate Assembly.

Expand monitoring, research, and assessment of the individual and cumulative impacts and risks of climate change on Puget Sound. (ID #131)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Increase monitoring, research, and systematic assessment of climate stressors such as ocean acidification, sea surface and stream temperature and their compounding impacts;
  • Adopt frameworks connecting human wellbeing to ecosystem health to evaluate the impacts of climate change on holistic health including mental, emotional, and physical health of Puget Sound residents, particularly vulnerable populations and underserved communities;
  • Adopt data-driven criteria or framework that provides evidence-based climate actions and supports prioritization of multi-benefit investments;
  • Conduct cost-benefit analyses of climate actions including increasing monitoring, research, and assessment of economic consequences of climate change and the opportunities associated with building climate resilience;
  • Develop, analyze, and apply the Puget Sound Partnership alternative future scenarios to explore and express desired futures and evaluate trade-offs among possible approaches.

Empower residents, visitors, climate migrants, and youth to be advocates for climate action. (ID #132)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Improve awareness of resources and accessibility of relevant information (for example, through language translation and use of open-source resources) to empower residents to protect communities from climate-sensitive harms and advocate for climate action;
  • Increase climate migrant awareness that Puget Sound has already been affected by climate change and what they can do to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, sequester carbon, adapt, and improve resilience within their new communities;
  • Develop targeted engagement campaigns to educate and empower residents, visitors, climate migrants, and youth on the effects, risks, and opportunities to reduce emissions and vulnerability and increase resilience;
  • Increase trainings for non-tribal nation entities, engagement opportunities, and other forms of ongoing support to increase recognition of tribal nations’ treaty and sovereign rights and strengthen meaningful collaboration between tribal nations and non-tribal nations entities;
  • Increase education about carbon emissions and increase carbon emission transparency in manufacturing and other related industries.

Educate and train decision makers and professionals about climate impacts and risks on Puget Sound. (ID #133)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Fund and implement trainings to build a collective and shared understanding of the climate impacts and risks on Puget Sound and prioritize action needed to adapt and build resilience;
  • Increase trainings to teach decision-makers and relevant professionals how to discuss climate change with communities, including youth, disproportionately impacted communities, and business owners, business groups, and unions;
  • Support effective communication of climate risks and opportunities by leaders and decision-makers to promote legislative action;
  • Identifying opportunities for businesses, business groups, unions, and communities to address climate change impacts;
  • Collaborate with climate change communication experts to support development and implementation of outreach and engagement campaigns.

Improve networks for sharing information across public (transboundary, federal, tribal nations, state, and local) and private sectors. (ID #135)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Increase understanding and opportunities for cross- sector collaboration and coordination;
  • Collaborate across local, regional, and state-wide organizations to create a comprehensive, widely accessible network of climate data, information, resources, best practices, and shared strategies;
  • Increase research and share information about innovative technologies that decrease emissions, increase sequestration, and advance climate adaptation;
  • Advance science, integrate Indigenous knowledge, and improve BMPs to increase effective climate adaptation.

Develop and implement social marketing (behavior change) strategies to influence climate-related behaviors. (ID #172)

Key opportunities for 2022-2026 include:

  • Develop and implement effective social marketing (behavior change) campaigns on solutions to reduce climate change impacts on the environment, wildlife, and human health, including mental health;
  • And develop and implement programs to encourage residents, visitors, and climate migrants to utilize public transportation, as well as incentivizing employers in Puget Sound to implement employee commute reduction programs in areas where they are not currently mandated.
Implementation Considerations

No related implementation considerations at this time.



What We're Measuring

We achieve our recovery goals of healthy human populations, healthy water quality, abundant water quantity, increasing functioning habitat, thriving species and food webs, and vibrant quality of life by better understanding and communicating the effects of climate change on Puget Sound.

Current Legislative Actions