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After completing the initial campus-community resilience assessment, schools should develop a Climate Action Plan (CAP) that includes goals for increasing resilience. While schools may create a separate resilience plan, Second Nature recommends folding resilience objectives into the overall sustainability approach. The end result should be an integrated CAP that includes emissions mitigation along with adaptation and resilience.

Many principles of planning for resilience are the same as planning for carbon neutrality. However, campuses with existing CAPs should revisit their plans to ensure objectives are aligned and up to date. Consider whether or not the goals outlined for emissions reductions fit with increasing resilience. This may require amending some of the existing goals. The intent with this planning work is that it allows campus (and community) systems to become more integrated and to reduce emissions while also enhancing the adaptability of the system.

As with the Resilience Assessment, there is no single correct process for incorporating resilience into a CAP. Campuses should use the outcomes from the Resilience Assessment process to select and prioritize actions, set measurable goals and targets, and identify strategies for implementation. For campuses that developed a shared future vision, consider what action steps need to be taken to achieve the desired future while moderating climate risks.

Why include Resilience in a Climate Action Plan?

Second Nature recommends a CAP including both carbon neutrality and climate resilience goals. An integrated CAP will help campuses think comprehensively about addressing climate change, and may highlight synergies between mitigation and adaptation strategies. However, campuses may choose to develop separate carbon reduction and climate resilience plans if this makes more sense for the institution’s planning processes. 


  • How to Report on Resilience Goals in a Climate Action Plan (Google Doc)
    • This document provides step-by-step instructions on completing the resilience section of the Climate Action Plan in the Reporting Platform. This includes selecting strategies to build resilience and setting short, medium, and long term goals. This document is regularly updated.
  • Resilience Prioritization Quadrant (PDF)
    • The Quadrant provides a framework that can be used to organize and prioritize potential resilience actions based on their importance and urgency. This includes examples from city Climate Action Plans.
  • Sample City and Campus Resilience Plans
    • These example resilience plans can aid institutions currently building their own plans. These plans offer some of the most thorough or novel ideas for implementing resilience in a city or campus setting. Each plan has been selected to represent a range of population sizes and institution categories. While each plan may not exactly fit all types of institutions, each contains ideas that can help campuses brainstorm their own customized resilience plan.
  • Sample Resilience Metrics (Google Doc)
    • This document contains sample metrics that could be used to set resilience goals and measure progress. These metrics are meant to provide ideas and help campuses think through how they will measure and track aspects of climate resilience.

Thank You to Climate Programs Intern Cass Michaud for helping to compile these resources.