In recent decades, the concept of sustainability has emerged as a guiding principle for public and private institutions. Sustainability emphasizes decision-making that secures positive, long-term economic, social and environmental benefits. A broad range of factors pose barriers or threats to achieving sustainability objectives. Climate change is one such threat. Yet changes in climate will interact with other drivers of sustainability including public health, education, and economic development.
While the issue of climate change has long been discussed as a global challenge, questions are increasingly being asked regarding what climate change might mean at the local level, where individuals live, work, and play. This report, Sustaining Tennessee in the Face of Climate Change: Grand Challenges and Opportunities, was prepared for consideration by decision-makers within the government, business communities and nongovernmental organizations of the State of Tennessee, its 95 counties and its municipalities. Written by the Sustainable Tennessee Organization, a diverse group of concerned researchers from universities and institutions across the State, the report represents a first-step toward elucidating the issue of climate change and sustainability in the State of Tennessee. The report summarizes the interactions between climate change and other key issues relevant to the future well-being of Tennesseans, what we know and don’t know about climate change at the State level, and what the potential consequences of climate change might be for Tennessee. Yet, at the same time, the report emphasizes the broad range of opportunities that exist to both manage the risks and create ‘win-win’ outcomes that generate benefits for our communities and industries while pursuing sustainability objectives.
Esther Parish, Benjamin Preston & Virginia Dale, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
John Dunn, Tennessee Department of Health
David Kirschke, Tennessee Department of Health
Beau Wesh, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
The views expressed in this report are based upon the expert judgment and research findings of the editors and contributing authors. The authors participated in their individual capacities, and therefore this report does not necessarily reflect the views of their respective institutions or organizations.
For more information, please contact:
Benjamin L. Preston Phone: +1 865 574 6496
Climate Change Science Institute Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
MS-6301 PO Box 2008
One Bethel Valley Road
Oak Ridge, TN 37831-6253