The Ocean Foundation –www.oceanfdn.org- The Oceans and Adaptation in the Face of Climate Change – pg. 3
with technical experts, 2) Engage all stakeholders including local community representatives, cityplanners, county level officials, and coastal developers, 3) Incorporate local knowledge andunderstanding of coastal-change processes into adaptation strategies, and 4) Host workshops andeducation exchange forums to teach local communities, including shoreline stakeholders, about climatechange and impacts relevant to their community.
More specific response and adaptation strategiesmight include:
Increase Resilience of Coastal Zone With Shoreline ProtectionStrategies:
Short-sighted human response often includeserecting coastal defenses and structural barriers such as seawalls, dikes, bulkheads, and beach nourishment etc., which canhelp prevent sea level rise from inundating low-lying coastalproperty and affecting key human infrastructure. Constructingsea wall and bulkhead protection for just 25% of the length of thenortheast and mid-Atlantic coastline would cost between $300million to just under $8 billion.
In addition, the environmentalcosts of such strategies are significant, and most structuresrequire regular investment in maintenance and rebuilding, whichmakes this strategy even less viable. An alternative adaptationstrategy would be a planned retreat, in which structures are relocated inland or abandoned asshorelines retreat.
Improvements to National Marine Transportation Services:
Adaptation strategies will have to includesignificant changes in the planning, design, construction, operation, and maintenance of transportationsystems. A recent National Academies report calls for the U.S. federal government to establish aresearch program to re-evaluate existing road design standards and develop new standards for addressing climate change; the creation of an interagency working group on adaptation; changes infederal regulations regarding long-range planning guidelines and infrastructure rehabilitationrequirements; and re-evaluation of the National Flood Insurance Program and updating flood insurancerate maps with climate change in mind.
Adaptation Strategies for Small Island Nations:
Adaptive measures for small island nations include the rehabilitation and conservation of naturalsea defenses and fish nurseries like mangroves, coastal wetlands, andcoral reefs. Adaptation will have to include consideration of relocation of vulnerable communities, redesign of infrastructure such as sewagetreatment and energy plants, and evaluation of sustainability in any newdevelopment. Increased use of renewable energy could also assist incutting energy import bills and managing the physical and economiceffects of climate change.
Integrated Coastal Habitat Protection:
Coastal planners and managersshould consider preserving existing mangroves by reducing pollutionfrom land-based sources in order to make existing mangroves morehealthy and resilient, restore lost or degraded mangrove wetlands, and set back coastal infrastructureand development to allow mangroves to spread inland.
Integrated coastal management planningshould also be applied to coral reef conservation strategies inclusive of reef resiliency mechanisms
Researchers assessing erosion impactsin a coastal wetland. Source: MarinePhotobankMangrove reforestation. Source:Marine Photobank