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Adaptation Strategies to Protect Areas of Increased Risk From Coastal Flooding Due to Climate Change


The scientific community has reached a strong consensus that the Earth’s climate is changing. The projected increase in temperature will cause sea level rise that will gradually inundate coastal areas and increase both beach erosion and flooding from coastal storms, changes in precipitation patterns, stronger hurricanes, and threats to biodiversity. Local governments must plan and act to address the impacts of climate change. This preparation includes risk assessments, prioritization of projects, and funding and allocation of both financial and human resources. Adaptation will require creativity, compromise, and collaboration across all levels of government, the private sector, and community residents. The Rockingham Planning Commission (RPC) received funds from the Town of Seabrook and the New Hampshire Coastal Program to develop adaptation strategies to protect areas of Town at risk of flooding due to climate change. The elements of this project were to conduct research on present consensus estimates of sea level rise affecting the New England coast, the review approached taken by other states and communities in responding to this threat, to develop maps identifying the areas of increased risk to flooding from sea level rise specific to Seabrook, and finally to identify the various regulatory and non-regulatory options that should be considered by Seabrook to protect the Town from this potential risk. 

Primary Toolkit:

Climate Change Toolkit

Keyword Area:

Adaptation, Climate, Community Design, Environmental Health, Natural Disaster


Institutional Author:

Rockingham Planning Commission





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