Natural hazards, including those made more extreme by climate change, can have a significant impact on developed and improved real property, referred to herein as the built environment. Due to the effects of climate change, patterns of development and improvement in vulnerable locations, and the traditional focus of building codes on life safety rather than property protection, property damage is becoming more common and more extreme. As a result of these factors and the potential for substantial economic losses at the property level, property resilience assessments are becoming an integral part of real estate decision-making.
This guide provides an overview of a generalized, systematic approach for conducting a Property Resilience Assessment (PRA) consisting of first, identifying the natural hazards likely to affect a property; next, evaluating the risks posed by those hazards along with the capacity of the property to prepare for, adapt to, withstand and recover from those hazards; and then finally, identifying conceptual resilience measures to enhance property-level performance and recovery. The PRA includes, at minimum, a baseline assessment of safety, damage, functional recovery time, and a limited consideration of community resilience or other material dependencies, such as the ability of utilities to deliver service to a property following a hazard event.
This guide is focused on providing property-level information relevant to decision-makers such as real estate investors, owners, operators, lenders, and insurers, with a goal of enhanced property-level resilience leading to improved occupant safety, asset value preservation, reduced disruption, or other User-specific goals. This guide recognizes the differences between property-level and community resilience and highlights the importance of community and infrastructure considerations as potential additional areas of inquiry beyond the scope of this guide by referencing ASTM E3350 Standard Guide for Community Resilience Planning for Buildings and Infrastructure and ASTM E3130 Standard Guide for Developing Cost-Effective Community Resilience Strategies, in addition to ASTM E3341 Standard Guide for General Principles of Resilience.
Since the concept of resilience applies broadly beyond climate change considerations, the PRA process includes evaluation of a broad range of hazards, including but not limited to, those made more extreme by climate change. In the instance of seismic hazards, this guide references ASTM E2026 Standard Guide for Seismic Risk Assessment of Buildings and E2557 Standard Practice for Probable Maximum Loss (PML) Evaluations for Earthquake Due-Diligence Assessments. This guide is also intended complement existing property decision-making processes involving other ASTM standards, including E1527 Standard Guide for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process and E2018 Standard Guide for Property Condition Assessment: Baseline Property Condition Assessment Process in addition to E2026 and E2557. Over 170 task group members worked on the draft guide, and the task group was composed of members from a variety of perspectives including A&E design firms, climate risk and catastrophe modeling organizations (both commercial and non-profit), lending institutions, risk management professionals, government agencies and government sponsored enterprises (GSEs), property insurers, property due diligence consultants, natural hazard mitigation professionals, resilience and adaptation experts, commercial real estate (CRE) owners and institutional investors, CRE developers and operators, and many more.
The title and scope are in draft form and are under development within this ASTM Committee.