Enhancing Resilience and Reducing Vulnerability to Observed and Expected Changes in Climate
Government operations are facing climate-related risks and extreme weather today. In fact, these risks are a “high risk” according the Government Accountability Office’s High Risk List. Extreme weather incidents and changing trends damage facilities and equipment, disrupt communications networks and transportation routes needed to deliver supplies and services, and increase energy and water costs. Prevention and management of these risks is essential to ensure the Federal mission today and over the service life of Federal investments.
GSA is instrumental in helping its Federal customers safeguard Federal assets and manage this crosscutting fiscal and mission risk over the asset service life. We are integrating these practices to reduce risks and bolster life safety, public safety, and public health and to reduce costly emergency incident responses. Addressing these risks includes identifying mission-critical facilities, products, and services, and developing the risk management timing and response. These activities are undertaken to ensure reliable performance of mission and operations in changing conditions.
Risk Management Policy
GSA is committed to secure the Federal investment and support mission continuity. GSA collaborates with its customer agencies on risk planning exercises and has developed tools and methods to improve the understanding of the impacts of observed and expected changes in climate on operations and statutory mission. The outcomes are used for investment planning, asset management and contract management so that GSA can safeguard federal assets and avoid misappropriation. GSA also closely monitors the insurance, accounting, and actuary industry response to climate-related risks spanning from business continuity, drought, flood, windstorm, wildfire, sea level change, and extreme weather risk insurance.
These efforts support GSA’s Enterprise Risk Management to increase the agency’s capacity to assess and manage this high risk. Information on how past extreme events have affected GSA’s assets and projections of not-to-exceed thresholds to ensure life safety, public safety, public health, and energy and water surety requirements helps customer agencies manage climate-related risks to Federal mission.
GSA customers expect supplies, services, and spaces that are climate-resilient so they can operate at full capability and capacity. GSA must continue to work closely with its customers to understand how these risks, in conjunction with other socio-economic and demographic trends, will affect customer agency missions.