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Adaptation Planning for the National Estuary Program

Created: 5/29/2009 - Updated: 9/26/2019


This document describes five critical elements of adaptation planning, and provides examples of these elements and suggestions for additional resources. Any estuary in the National Estuary Program (NEP) should incorporate these elements in an adaptation plan to achieve recognition as a Climate Ready Estuary (CRE). While specifically developed for the NEPs, this document can be used as a resource for other coastal communities as a starting point for planning to adapt to climate change.

The five critical elements that an adaptation plan should include to earn Climare Ready Estuary (CRE) recognition are:

  • Assessment of vulnerability to climate change
  • Summary of considerations used to set priorities and select actions
  • Description of specific adaptation actions for implementation
  • Plan for communicating with stakeholders and decision makers
  • Plan for monitoring and evaluating results.

Published On

Saturday, May 30, 2009


Community / Local
National / Federal
Sector Addressed: 
Conservation / Restoration
Target Climate Changes and Impacts: 
Sea level rise
Species of concern
Storms or extreme weather events
Type of Adaptation Action/Strategy: 
Natural Resource Management / Conservation
Incorporate climate-smart guidelines into restoration
Incorporate future conditions into natural resources planning and policies
Capacity Building
Conduct vulnerability assessments and studies
Create or modify shoreline management measures
Develop / implement adaptation plans
Taxonomic Focus: