In November 2019, over 300 Methow Valley community members gathered at the Methow Valley Community Center to identify the ways our community could begin adapting to changes in the climate. Dr. Amy Snover, director of the UW Climate Impacts Group, gave an overview of how climate change is impacting the Methow Watershed now and into the future.

After Dr. Snover's presentation, participants broke into groups to review and prioritize impacts and actions that the Task Force previously identified for five sectors of our community: agriculture, natural systems, emergency services, and human health, infrastructure, and economy. After the November meeting, the Climate Task Force and sector subcommittees vetted each proposed action, evaluating feasibility, cost, timeline, and effectiveness. After each action was analyzed, each sector subcommittees prioritized the actions based on their experience and knowledge for their issue area.

Example actions for each sector: 

  • Agriculture: Promote and expand water conservation and efficient irrigation practices.
  • Economy: Identify funding sources to help diversify our local economy.
  • Human Health and Emergency Management: Create community, clean air spaces during smoke events. 
  • Infrastructure: Increase bike, carpool, electric vehicle, and public transportation infrastructure. 
  • Natural Systems: Identify funding to support existing wetland protection programs.

We expect to finalize this process in the coming months and seek additional feedback from the community.