OCT 2020 Cool Topic
The League’s Environmental Issues Group (EIG) joined the City of Delray Beach 
at “RISE: A Climate & Art Weekend” on October 2nd for a panel discussion to learn how the effects of climate change impact our local communities and what our officials are doing about it.  The panel consisted of Mary Mertz, EIG Chair, who asked questions to city sustainability officials: Lindsey Nieratka, Boca Raton; John Kent Edwards, Delray Beach; and Rebecca Harvey, Boynton Beach.


Some critical impacts of climate change were discussed, including heavy rainfall, extreme heat, and stronger storms – which means higher storm surge and increased flooding.  Each city addressed these impacts and their initiatives.


Lindsey Nieratka, Boca Raton

Coastal Resilience Partnership of Palm Beach County

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory

Regional Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment

CRS (Community Rating System) Flood Score


John Kent Edwards, Delray Beach 

Seawall Vulnerability Study & Waterfront Construction

Stormwater Master Plan

Beach re-nourishment & Habitat Restoration

Underground Injection Wells & Contaminated Site Cleanup


Rebecca Harvey, Boynton Beach

Building on existing Climate Change Action Plan

Greenhouse Gas Inventory & Reduction of Carbon Emissions

Adaptation to Climate Change Impacts 

King Tides


The constraints that impact climate change efforts include finding ways to weave sustainability and resilience into day to day operations.  Additionally,  a sense of urgency is critical with regard to getting involved and taking action.

Social impacts dealing with climate gentrification and environmental justice have become major considerations.  We can learn a great deal from our neighbors in Miami. We must effectively implement fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations and policies.


Collaborative efforts are many, but highlighted by the panel were:  The Coastal Resilience Partnership, SE Florida Compact, Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment, Southeast Florida Sustainability Directors Network.  Everyone agreed that success will be obtained through partnerships and everyone working together.

Residents can participant and help to make a change by searching local websites (see below) for options.  For example: get to know our many parks, participate in the Green Business Recognition Program, Project Shade Tree, participate in Commission meetings, and VOTE!


Detailed information can be found on:











Kathy Panko


October 15, 2020