In 2050, the Metro Boston region is prepared for the extremes of a changing climate. We are prepared for more high-heat and extreme-cold days, increased rainfall, extended periods of drought, stronger storms, and sea level rise. Homes, schools, workplaces, hazardous facilities, and infrastructure are located away from serious threats or are designed to withstand them. When major climate events interrupt critical services, the response is managed to minimize disruption. People have the resources, networks, and supports to withstand climate emergencies and to recover when disaster strikes. Older adults, children, residents with lower incomes, and other vulnerable populations can safely live their lives, and fully enjoy outdoor activities. Neighborhoods are designed and improved to protect the health of residents, with ample shade, drainage, and green space. Wetlands, water bodies, forests, and plant and animal communities are restored, protected, and are able to adapt to climate change impacts.
Residents and workers, especially those most vulnerable to climate impacts, live and work in neighborhoods designed to minimize climate-related health effects such as asthma, heat-related illness, and other diseases.
All neighborhoods and municipalities have updated emergency response and communication plans in anticipation of climate-related emergencies. Communities have adequate supplies, trained professionals, and volunteers ready to respond in a coordinated and effective manner.
Critical systems, including energy supply and distribution, communications, water, and transportation are designed to continue functioning during, or quickly rebound after, severe storm events.
New homes, institutions, businesses, and hazardous facilities are built away from ecologically sensitive areas or areas vulnerable to climate impacts, or they are built in such a way as to withstand those impacts. Existing homes, institutions, businesses, and hazardous facilities in the most vulnerable locations are relocated or modified to absorb impacts.
Green infrastructure beautifies neighborhoods. It is included in all developments, providing multiple co-benefits, such as stormwater filtration, shade, cleaner air, carbon storage, and cooling.
Vulnerable populations affected by climate-related events like storms, floods, or droughts are able to avoid major financial, educational, and social disruptions, and are supported in their decisions to move out of harm’s way or to make their properties more resilient.