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Adaptation Action Areas: Policy Options for Adaptive Planning for Rising Sea Levels

In 2012, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) initiated a five-­year project to integrate sea level rise adaptation into current planning mechanisms, including the local comprehensive plan, hazard mitigation plan, and post-­disaster redevelopment plan.  One of the focus areas is to provide statewide guidance on how to implement an Adaptation Action Area  at the local level.

Securing the Future of Cultural Heritage by Identifying Barriers to and Strategizing Solutions for Preservation under Changing Climate Conditions

Climate change challenges cultural heritage management and preservation. Understanding the barriers that can impede preservation is of paramount importance, as is developing solutions that facilitate the planning and management of vulnerable cultural resources. Using online survey research, we elicited the opinions of diverse experts across southeastern United States, a region with cultural resources that are particularly vulnerable to flooding and erosion from storms and sea level rise.

Developing a Structured Decision-Making Model to Facilitate Adaptive Dam Management

Researchers at the Tennessee Cooperative Fishery Research Unit and Tennessee Tech are developing a structured decision-making model to guide adaptive dam management at the Tims Ford Dam on the Elk River in Tennessee. This model will help optimize dam operations to mitigate negative effects of cold reservoir water release on downstream native aquatic species and sport fish while maintaining human flood protection and hydropower generation opportunities.

Integrating Climate Change into Plan Revisions at Francis Marion National Forest

In 2012, the U.S. Forest Service released a Planning Rule requiring the integration of climate change impacts, vulnerability, and adaptation into revisions of forest management plans. Between 2012 and 2016, the Francis Marion National Forest undertook the forest plan revision process, relying on the evaluation of changes that have occurred since 1996 as well as outcomes from public meetings and other outreach efforts. The initial revision was released in August 2016 and the final revised forest plan is effective as of May 2017.

Upper Neuse Clean Water Initiative: Collaborative Land Protection to Maintain Water Quality

The Upper Neuse Clean Water Initiative (UNCWI) is a collaborative effort between regional land trusts, nonprofit entities, and several local municipalities and counties to protect drinking water supplies and quality in the Upper Neuse River Basin through land acquisition and/or conservation easements. A collaboratively developed Conservation Plan guides land acquisition by prioritizing land parcels according to their importance to water quality and their ability to provide other conservation benefits for the basin.

Long-Range Water Supply Planning in the Town of Cary, North Carolina

The Town of Cary, North Carolina, recently completed an update to its Long-Range Water Resources Plan. The plan update incorporates a probability-based look at how various factors influence water supply, such as population growth and climate variability. The plan update also identifies priority strategies and includes an implementation plan to ensure resilient and sustainable water management through 2060.

Resilient Water Supply Planning at Orange Water and Sewer Authority, North Carolina

The Carrboro-Chapel Hill region of North Carolina has experienced several severe droughts, is experiencing steady population and economic growth, and may also experience increased flooding and more severe droughts as a result of climate change. As a critical water, wastewater, and reclaimed water services provider for this area, Orange Water and Sewer Authority is preparing for an uncertain water supply future through a variety of methods.

Waveland’s Climate-Informed Local Hazard Mitigation Plan Update

Waveland, Mississippi is a small town by the Gulf of Mexico. Many residents reside in areas less than 15 meters above sea level. Frequent floods and resulting costs of insurance rates and home repairs are driving residents out of the city. With a grant funded by FEMA and the Alabama-Mississippi Sea Grant, the City of Waveland hired the consulting firm AMEC Environment and Infrastructure (AMEC) to develop a hazard mitigation plan that followed the Disaster Mitigation ACT (DMA) planning regulations.

Using Advocacy to Enhance Gulf Coast Resilience

The Gulf Restoration Network is an environmental advocacy organization that seeks to unite Gulf Coast citizens to protect and restore natural resources. Through empowering local communities, taking legal action against industries that have degraded Gulf Coast and community resiliency, and monitoring government action to ensure sustainable management of contemporary natural resources, the Gulf Restoration Network is helping restore and maintain the natural systems that both define and protect Gulf Coast communities.

Inner Harbor Navigation Canal Lake Borgne Surge Barrier: Resilient Storm Surge Protection for New Orleans

The Inner Harbor Navigation Canal Lake Borgne Surge Barrier, the largest civil engineering project in the history of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, was designed to reduce storm surge and flood risk for New Orleans after devastating flooding during Hurricane Katrina. The 26-foot-high, 10,000-foot-long storm surge barrier minimizes 100-year flood risk, and features three navigational gates that can be raised in anticipation of storm surge.