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Coastal Storm Surge Scenarios for Water Utilities

December 2011

The Coastal Storm Surge Scenarios for Water Utilities, created by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), provides a visual representation using a map interface of hurricane strike frequency and worst-case coastal storm surge inundation scenarios (Storm surge inundation refers to the abnormal rise of water generated by a storm, over and above the predicted astronomical tides). This map aims to illuminate historical trends in coastal storm surges and flooding, in order to aid decision-makers tasked with improving coastal resiliency and emergency preparedness.

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Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) and Google Real-Time Road Closure Maps

September 2011

The Google Crisis Response Team and the Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) partnered to develop a real-time road closure map for Vermont in the aftermath of Hurricane Irene. This tool provided information on the location and severity of damaged infrastructure so that state government agencies and the public could safely and efficiently navigate Vermont’s roads, and manage the damage in the aftermath of the storm.

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Extreme Weather Events Map (1995 - 2011)

June 2011

This interactive map provided by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES - formally the Pew Center on Global Climate Change) shows where historically some of the most significant heat waves, floods, droughts, and wildfires have occurred across the United States since 1995.   The map focuses on the types of extreme weather events that are already more frequent and/or intense and the risk of which can be expected to rise in the future as a result of climate change. According to C2ES, these events impact all parts of the country and provide opportunities to learn about the potential economic and human impacts from extreme weather events and the actions needed to build resilience for the future.

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Retrospective and Prospective Model Simulations of Sea Level Rise Impacts on Gulf of Mexico Coastal Marshes and Forests in Waccasassa Bay, Florida

May 10, 2011

The State of Florida is especially threatened by sea level rise due to extensive low elevation coastal habitats (approximately 8,000 km2 < 1 m above sea level) where the majority of the human population resides. This paper used the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model (SLAMM) simulation to improve understanding of the magnitude and location of these changes for 58,000 ha of the Waccasassa Bay region of Florida’s central Gulf of Mexico coast. To assess how well SLAMM portrays changes in coastal wetland systems resulting from sea level rise, the study conducted a hindcast in which they compared model results to 30 years of field plot data.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Laura Geselbracht, Kathleen Freeman, Eugene Kelly, Doria R. Gordon, Francis E. Putz

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NatureServe Climate Change Vulnerability Index

April 2011

The NatureServe Climate Change Vulnerability Index (CCVI) can help identify plant and animal species that are particularly vulnerable to the effects of climate change. Using the Index, information is readily available about a species' natural history, distribution and landscape circumstances to predict whether it will likely suffer habitat loss, population reductions, or both during the coming years. CCVI can be used as part of a variety of analyses, including assessing the relative risk of species listed in State Wildlife Action Plans or part of any assessment of the vulnerability of species to climate change.

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Social Vulnerability Index (SoVI)

The Social Vulnerability Index (SoVI), developed by the Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute at the University of South Carolina, is a publicly available tool for assessing social vulnerability. County-level socioeconomic and demographic data collected from 2006 to 2010 were used to construct the index of social vulnerability to environmental hazards for the United States.   

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Identifying Surface Transportation Vulnerabilities and Risk Assessment Opportunities Under Climate Change: Case Study in Portland, Oregon

2011

Researchers at Portland State University (PSU) and the Oregon Transportation Research and Education Consortium developed a framework for assessing climate change vulnerabilities to multi-modal transportation systems using a geographic information system (GIS). They used Portland as a case study for testing the GIS model and provided recommendations for how the GIS could be used to develop adaptive responses in the transportation sector. In the study, the researchers focused on two climate impacts that could affect surface transportation networks in Portland – flooding and landslides - and used GIS to model hazard locations in Portland.

Authors or Affiliated Users: Lindsay Walker, Miguel A. Figliozzi, Ashley R. Haire, John MacArthur

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EPA Smart Growth: Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities

2011

EPA's Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities seeks to provide targeted technical assistance to communities to protect the environment, promote equitable development and help address the challenges of climate change using a variety of tools that have demonstrated results and widespread application. This technical assistance is designed to help selected local and/or tribal governments to implement development approaches that improve public health, create jobs, expand economic opportunity, and improve overall quality of life.

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National Drought Mitigation Center: Drought Impact Reporter

From the National Drought Mitigation Center of the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, this database stores and displays comprehensive information related to drought impacts in the U.S. Accessible information provides key drought context and detail, as well as readily summarized information on impacts related to:

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Climate Change Bird Atlas

October 26, 2010

This tool helps determine suitable habitat for 147 bird species in the Eastern U. S. (east of the 100th meridian), based on current and projected climate scenarios. This information can then be used to develop large-scale projections of species' responses to climate change. By taking current distributions of bird habitat in the U. S. , and applying a variety of climate scenarios, land managers can predict which areas will be suitable for which species. Information is presented in the following forms: maps of current suitable habitat; maps of suitable habitat projections for the year 2100 under different climate scenarios; and statistical tables providing quantitative estimates of species habitat changes.

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