Carmel mayor helps with Obama’s recent Climate Change report

A map of the U.S. shows rising temperatures of various states since 2012. (Submitted image)

A map of the U.S. shows rising temperatures of various states since 2012. (Submitted image)

The White House released a report last week detailing ways that federal and local governments can work together to deal with the effects of climate change.

Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard was one of only four Republicans to serve on the 26-member climate change task force.

The State, Local and Tribal Leaders Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience made its recommendations on Nov. 17 after months of meetings to discuss the issue.

“Climate change is a global challenge,” said presidential counselor John Podesta in a statement. “But the impact of climate change is very local and very personal.”

Although some Republicans might criticize Brainard for serving on a Democratic president’s committee, Brainard said he believes caring for the environment shouldn’t be politicized. In fact, he points to several Republicans – going back as far as Teddy Roosevelt – who championed this cause. He even notes that the term “conservative” has the root word of “conserve.”

“This should be a nonpartisan issue,” he said. “If anything this should be a Republican issue.”

Brainard said he learned a lot from his experience on the task force and has plenty of ideas about urban sprawl and city planning that he is excited to share with Carmel leaders.

Although coastal towns are often seen as most affected by climate change due to hurricanes, erosion and rising waters, Brainard said extreme weather can hit anywhere, even in the landlocked Midwest. Just look at the severe tornadoes that Hoosiers have seen in recent years.

And even if you don’t believe in the science behind climate change, Brainard said the issues the task force dealt with are still important. It doesn’t matter what causes a tornado or hurricane when you are discussing better ways to deal with disaster preparedness and improving communication between local governments and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Brainard said there were many bureaucratic errors that the task force made suggestions on. Simple solutions such as finding ways to create one application process for federal grants instead of four or five different forms.

Brainard said there are many ways that extreme weather can affect cities beyond just shoveling snow. He said there are studies that show extreme heat can be linked to a city’s crime rate.

The White House unveiled a Web-based climate resilience toolkit – located at –  to help local leaders adopt measures to prepare cities for rising sea levels, droughts and other effects of climate change.


Current Morning Briefing Logo

Stay CURRENT with our daily newsletter (M-F) and breaking news alerts delivered to your inbox for free!

Select list(s) to subscribe to

By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Current Publishing, 30 S. Range Line Road, Carmel, IN, 46032, You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact