Seabrook, New Hampshire - Adaptation Strategies to Protect Areas of Increased Risk From Coastal Flooding Due to Climate Change

The Regional Planning Commission (RPC) was tasked by the Town of Seabrook, NH to develop adaptation strategies to protect areas of the town at risk of flooding due to climate change. The elements of this project were to: 1) conduct research on present consensus estimates of sea-level rise affecting the New England coast; 2) review approaches taken by other states and communities in responding to this threat; 3) develop maps identifying the areas of increased risk to flooding from sea-level rise specific to Seabrook; and 4) identify the various regulatory and non-regulatory options that should be considered by Seabrook to protect it from this potential risk. This report is a synthesis of those efforts. For outputs of this project, such as maps, contact the Rockingham Planning Commission (RPC).

One policy recommendation is for the town to incorporate climate change and sea-level rise impacts into all basic planning, zoning, and permitting. The recommendation indicates assessments should utilize a minimum of a 50-year planning horizon and assume a 1.5 foot sea-level rise in that period, and at least a 3 to 5 foot sea-level rise over 100 years. Other recommendations center on incorporating the consideration of climate change in the town's Master Plan and Hazard Mitigation Plan. Specific regulatory and non-regulatory policy recommendations are detailed.

The RPC is one of nine regional planning commissions in New Hampshire established by RSA 36:46. Operating as a non-profit local government organization, the Commission serves in an advisory role to local governments in order to promote coordinated planning, orderly growth, efficient land use, transportation access, and environmental protection.

Publication Date: July 25, 2009

Related Organizations:

  • Rockingham Planning Commission
  • Town of Seabrook, Maryland

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  • Adaptation plan

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