By Lili Bastian, Marc Hershman Marine Policy Fellow at the Washington State Department of Ecology
In June, Washington Sea Grant’s Ian Miller gave an introduction to the first objective of the Washington Coastal Resilience Project (WCRP): developing and communicating localized sea level projections using a probabilistic framework for Washington State. To assist local governments in using these projections effectively for shoreline planning decisions, the second objective of the WCRP, led by the Department of Ecology (Ecology), seeks to improve and coordinate the planning guidance of Washington state agencies (Ecology, the Department of Commerce, the Emergency Management Division, and others) so that local governments have a clear and comprehensive framework of planning tools available to address sea level rise.
By Paul Dye
I joined Washington Sea Grant last March following a 25-year career with The Nature Conservancy, where I worked on coastal management and marine conservation issues in South Florida and here in the Pacific Northwest. Living in the Florida Keys meant getting up close and personal with coastal hazards. My wife and I experienced four hurricanes that hit or brushed the Keys over the six years we lived there, and it didn’t require much imagination to picture how sea level rise will play out. The Keys are, after all, a string of very old coral reefs that died when past sea levels fell and left them exposed as islands.
Surging Seas announces their web tool is now available for 11 states including Washington. The Surging Seas team has announced their willingness to do an explanatory webinar; if one is planned, we will announce it through the Coastal Resilience listserv.
The tool can show up to ten feet of sea level rise as well as added map layers like infrastructure, income and contamination risks.
• "Fast Look" pages are printable PDF summaries for each place analyzed that integrate diverse findings and key explainers into one-stop destinations.
• New map layers show race, ethnicity and per capita income of exposed populations.
• Embedding the map for your website is now fast, easy and flexible. Set the map how you want it, and click on "Embed" in the lower right-hand corner.
• Comparisons for total vs. unprotected exposure allow quick assessment of potential protection from levees, ridges and other major features.
One of their new findings for Washington: more than $5 billion in property and 11,000 people occupy Puget Sound area land that would be exposed below 4 feet, a flood level likely to be seen by midcentury under mid-range projections.
Personally, I've had some difficulty getting the tool to work on state computers, so let me know if you've had better luck.
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