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Increasing Virginia's Resilience to Sea Level Rise and Natural Hazards

Sea level rise, land subsidence, higher average temperatures, more frequent and intense weather events, severe drought, and increased development, have increased risk and will continue to increase and exacerbate risk from natural hazards across the Commonwealth of Virginia. The number of federally declared disasters has steadily increased nationally and in Virginia. The number has experienced a 250 percent increase in federally declared disasters over the past 20 years, including declarations for flooding, hurricanes, severe storms, and wildfire.

Pennsylvania 2015 Climate Change Action Plan Update

The Pennsylvania Climate Change Act (Act 70 of 2008, or Act) provides for a report on potential climate change impacts and economic opportunities for the Commonwealth. The Act requires the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to develop an inventory of greenhouse gases (GHG) and administer a Climate Change Advisory Committee (CCAC), a voluntary registry of GHG emissions and a Climate Change Action Plan. Revisions to the Action Plan are required every three years.

DCNR and Climate Change Planning for the Future

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) is the caretaker of 2.2 million acres of State Forest land, 120 State Parks, advisor to the owners of 15 million acres of private forest land, a leader in providing outdoor recreation, and is the state’s primary conservation agency. DCNR’s mission is to conserve and sustain Pennsylvania’s natural resources for present and future generations, giving the department a unique role and responsibility in helping the Commonwealth reduce and adapt to climate change.

Pennsylvania Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Plan

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) is the caretaker of 2.2 million acres of state forests, 121 state parks, advisor to the owners of 15 million acres of private forest land, is a leader in providing outdoor recreation, and the state’s primary conservation agency. DCNR’s mission is to conserve and sustain Pennsylvania’s natural resources for present and future generations, giving the department a unique role and responsibility in helping the commonwealth reduce and adapt to climate change.

Community Adaptation to Sea-Level Rise and Inundation: Final Report

By pairing surveys and a public deliberative event with detailed household, neighborhood and county-level impacts data and visualization for sea-level rise associated coastal flooding and inundation, the Community Adaptation to Sea-Level Rise and Inundation project tested a new platform for increasing citizens’ engagement and discussion of local policy responses.

Sea Level Rise Adaptation Guide for Virginia Localities

Tool Overview: 

This is a Virginia-specific, web-based adaptation resource geared towards informing local government staff on the range of strategies available to combat sea level rise and recurrent flooding. The 'Adaptation Guide' is not a traditional report, but instead presents information in an abbreviated format. Each strategy has its own corresponding web page that highlights feedback from local government staff interviews, funding sources, Virginia case studies, sample ordinance language, and potential CRS credit.

Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge: Marsh Restoration

Dredge America was selected as the most qualified contractor to perform marsh restoration services for the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge (NWR).

The project, located in Cambridge, Maryland capitalizes on the experience and expertise Dredge America gained from the Prime Hook Restoration Project.

Dredge America helped restore the natural salt marsh using a thin layer deposition method of dredging. By spraying “dredge material” over the existing marsh surface, we raised the existing marsh platform to provide plant resiliency, combating rising sea levels at the site.

Evacuation and Adaptation for Sea Level Rise

Sea level rise is becoming a major problem for transportation agencies. This study examines three issues: (1) identifying the impacts of sea level rise and storm surge on areas that may be evacuated from a hurricane, (2) evaluating microscopic and mesoscopic traffic simulation tools for evacuation scenarios, and (3) identifying adaptation strategies that could be useful for addressing sea level rise and protecting the road network.