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North Carolina Sea-Level Rise Assessment Report

March 2010

In March 2010, the North Carolina Coastal Resources Commission's (CRC's) Science Panel on Coastal Hazards released this report estimating the extent of land on the North Carolina coast that will be covered by sea-level rise over this century. After explaining how sea-level rise can be assessed and measured, the report provides estimates for sea-level rise through the years 2025, 2050, 2075 and 2100. It concludes with recommendations to make improvements in sea-level monitoring as a first step to adaptation planning.

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Vulnerability and Climate Change in the U.S. Southeast

Oxfam America is funding programs in Louisiana and elsewhere in the Southeastern U.S. to help those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change to adapt and be better prepared. The goal of this project is to bring a fuller understanding of social vulnerabilities due to climate change in the U.S. southeast region to the public through a multidisciplinary examination of risks, hazards, and disaster.

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State and Local Governments Plan for Development of Most Land Vulnerable to Rising Sea Level along the U.S. Atlantic Coast

October 27, 2009

Based on the analysis of planning data and current policies of 131 state and local land use plans from Massachusetts to Florida, the study identifies those coastal areas likely to be affected by rising water levels and classifies them based on the extent of development already in place and the potential for future development. The report explains that the existing extensive development on the Atlantic coast creates the need for coastal protective structures, which could negatively impact wetlands.

Authors or Affiliated Users: J.G. Titus, D.E. Hudgens, D.L. Trescott, M. Craghan, W.H. Nuckols, C.H. Hershner, J.M. Kassakian, C.J. Linn, P.G. Merritt, T.M. McCue, J.F. O'Connell, J. Tanski, J. Wang

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Impacts of Global Warming on North Carolina's Coastal Economy

June 21, 2007

A scientific study was undertaken by researchers at four North Carolina universities to consider three aspects of the state's coastal economy and their vulnerability to a changing climate including: the impacts of sea-level rise on the coastal real estate market, the impacts of sea-level rise on coastal recreation and tourism, and the impacts of stronger tropical storms and hurricanes on business activity. The study used a range of moderate  assumptions, not best- or worst-case scenarios. This brief summary brochure is designed to present the main findings of the study for the benefit of the public and policy makers.

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Synthesis and Assessment Product (SAP) 4.1: Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region

January 2009

This report is one in a series of 21 Synthesis and Assessment Products (SAPs) produced between 2004 and 2009 by the U. S. Climate Change Science Program, aimed at providing current assessments of climate change science in the U. S. to inform public debate, policy, and operational decisions. The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in collaboration with the U. S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), collaborated on this report that discusses the impacts of sea-level rise on the physical characteristics of the coast, on coastal communities, and the habitats that depend on them in Mid-Atlantic coastal environments.

Authors or Affiliated Users: James G. Titus, K. Eric Anderson, Donald R. Cahoon, Dean B. Gesch, Stephen K. Gill, Benjamin T. Gutierrez, E. Robert Thieler, S. Jeffress Williams

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Economic and Environmental Costs of Climate Change: State Case Studies

This site provides PDF files of individual state case studies pertaining to the economic and environmental costs of climate change.   The studies were prepared by the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and the Center for Integrative Environmental Research (CIER) at the University of Maryland. The reports summarize climatic changes affecting 12 states, their potential fiscal impact, and the effect that future changes in climate may have on state economies. The research highlights the importance of planning for the possible effects of climate change on state natural and economic resources and explores options for reducing these effects.

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North Carolina's Coasts in Crisis: A Vision for the Future

October 2008

This report, prepared by two groups at East Carolina University, describes the risks that sea level rise poses for the North Carolina Coast.

Authors or Affiliated Users: S.R. Riggs, S.J. Culver, D.V. Ames, D.J. Mallison, P.R. Corbett, J.P. Walsh

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The Potential Impacts of Global Sea Level Rise on Transportation Infrastructure

October 2008

Prepared by the U. S. Department of Transportation, this report provides a high-level estimate of the net effect of sea level-rise and storm surges to transportation infrastructure on the U. S. eastern seaboard by 2100. The study integrates estimates of eustatic sea-level rise based on IPCC scenarios and digital elevation maps to identify areas that will either be inundated or placed at risk during storms. These estimates do not account for local variations. Based on 9 modeling outputs, from 6cm to 59cm, the study identifies the roads, airports, ports, and rail lines at risk from New York down to Florida, and it provides quantitative data on the extent to which each state in the study area will be affected by sea-level rise.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Kevin M. Wright, Christopher Hogan

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Potential for Shoreline Changes Due to Sea-Level Rise Along the U.S. Mid-Atlantic Region

2007

In 2007, thirteen scientists convened for a two-day meeting to exchange  information and develop a consensus opinion on potential future coastal changes for the mid-Atlantic coast in response to sea-level rise. This 2007 report is the result of this workshop, providing an overview of how sea level rise could impact mid-Atlantic coast landforms, from New York to Virginia. Four different scenarios for sea level rise were considered and applied to specific areas of the Atlantic coast: a) the long-term sea-level rise rate observed over the 20th century would persist over the 21st century; b) the 20th century rate would increase by 2 mm/yr; c) the 20th century rate would increase by 7 mm/yr; and d) sea-level would rise by 2 m over the next few hundred years.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Benjamin T. Gutierrez, S. Jeffries Williams, E. Robert Thieler

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National Assessment of Coastal Vulnerability to Sea-Level Rise: Preliminary Results for the Atlantic Coast

1999

One of three national assessments of U. S. coastal regions conducted in the late 1990's, this assessment focused on the Atlantic coastline, while the other two focused on the Gulf Coast and Pacific coastlines. The overall goal of these studies was to identify those portions of the U. S. coastal regions at risk and the nature of that risk (e. g. , inundation, erosion, etc. ). The long-term goal of this study is to predict future coastal changes with a degree of certainty useful for coastal management, following an approach similar to that used to map national seismic and volcanic hazards.

Authors or Affiliated Users: E. Robert Thieler, Erika S. Hammar-Klose

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