• Resources for Small Communities

Adaptation Strategies for Rural and Small Communities

This tab includes strategies, best practices, and legal and policy analysis relevant to adaptation efforts in rural and small communities.

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USDA Adaptation Resources for Agriculture: Responding to Climate Variability and Change in the Midwest and Northeast

October 2016

This USDA report provides information and resources to help farmers prepare for and respond to the regional impacts of climate change. The report summarizes the effects of climate change on agriculture and natural resources in the Midwest and Northeast U. S. and overviews strategic options for climate adaptation in agriculture.   The USDA provides new resources to bring climate change planning to the farm - including adaptation strategies and approaches, an adaptation workbook, and examples for assessing and planning.

Related Organizations: U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Subdivision Design and Flood Hazard Areas

2017

From the American Planning Association (APA), this report discusses strategies for using local subdivision ordinances and the site plan review process to enhance flood resilience. Recommendations are given for creating standards that protect natural floodplain function. The report discusses how climate change is increasing flood risks in communities.

Related Organizations: American Planning Association (APA), Association of State Floodplain Managers

Author or Affiliated User: James Schwab

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Green Infrastructure Primer: A Delaware Guide to Using Natural Systems in Urban, Rural, and Coastal Settings

January 2016

Delaware’s Green Infrastructure Primer, released in 2016, provides an overview of nature-based approaches that can mitigate stormwater runoff, flooding, erosion, and water and air pollution. The primer provides an introduction to green infrastructure, fact sheets regarding eight green infrastructure practices, three case studies showing examples of green infrastructure being used in Delaware, a discussion of larger-landscape-scale green infrastructure efforts, and suggested resources for more information.

Related Organizations: Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC)

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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In Deep: Helping Sandy-Affected Communities Address Vulnerability and Risk

October 2015

In Deep chronicles the Local Recovery Planning Manager (LRPM) program that was implemented by the non-profit organization New Jersey Future for selected Hurricane Sandy-affected coastal communities in greatest need. This report describes the program’s initial goals, successes and challenges, and lessons learned that can inform future disaster recovery initiatives both in New Jersey and across the country.

Related Organizations: New Jersey Future

Author or Affiliated User: David Kutner

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Climate Change and Agriculture, Including Aquaculture and Fisheries, in New Jersey

January 2016

The Rutgers Climate Institute put together this fact sheet to provide a brief and accessible summary of the impacts of climate change on agriculture in New Jersey, which includes climate effects that will impact crops, livestock, aquaculture, and fisheries. It explores the primary climate change risks to agriculture and fisheries in the state, and provides short summaries on how these sectors can both adapt to climate risks and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Related Organizations: Rutgers University, U.S. Forest Service (USFS)

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Resettlement as a Resilience Strategy

October 27, 2015

This document provides background information and guidance to Louisiana’s state and local governments on the retreat and resettlement process, and outlines the strategy for the ongoing resettlement of the Isle de Jean Charles Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw Native American community. As sea level rise and land loss threaten Louisiana’s low-lying regions, coastal communities must consider the costs and benefits of retreat and resettlement. The report provides a history of resettlement in the United States and makes the case that the resettlement of Isle de Jean Charles is just the beginning of more resettlement projects in the region.

Related Organizations: Lowlander Center

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Sustainable Working Waterfronts Toolkit and Final Report

March 2013

The Sustainable Working Waterfronts Toolkit is a web-based portal to many resources for decision and policy makers, waterfront landowners, and waterfront users. The Toolkit contains information about the historical and current use of waterfront space; the economic value of working waterfronts; and legal, policy, and financing tools that can be used to preserve, enhance, and protect these valuable areas. The Toolkit also features detailed case studies of successful working waterfronts initiatives from communities around the country.

Related Organizations: University of Massachusetts, Virginia Sea Grant, National Working Waterfront Network (NWWN)

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Level Up Audio Project

May 27, 2020

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region IX partnered with the Georgetown Climate Center to present the Level Up Audio Project to support local conversations about hazard risk and resilience, empower communities to advance resilience, strengthen a network of hazard mitigation and climate adaptation professionals, and inspire action. Level Up’s episodes discuss themes including climate change; equity, environmental justice, and social resilience; hazard mitigation; ecosystems and natural resilience; and more.

Related Organizations: Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Georgetown Climate Center

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Yankeetown, Florida Natural Resource Adaptation Action Area

The Town of Yankeetown, Florida is utilizing a state authorized land-use planning tool - called Adaptation Action Areas - to mitigate the impacts of sea-level rise on local ecosystems. Specifically, Yankeetown is experiencing coastal inundation due to sea-level rise that is causing large swaths of coastal forests to rapidly decline and salt marshes to migrate inland, creating a phenomenon known as “ghost forests.” Yankeetown has taken a unique approach to planning for coastal change by utilizing Adaptation Action Areas. Adaptation Action Areas are overlay districts local governments can utilize to increase management attention and oversight over defined areas within their municipality with the goal of increasing resilience to sea-level rise impacts. Yankeetown amended its local comprehensive plan to create a “Natural Resource Adaptation Action Area,” which is the first instance of a locality in Florida using this tool for the purpose of natural resource management rather than solely infrastructure protection. The tool is helping Yankeetown shape future growth and development to conserve and protect its natural resources in the face of rising seas. Local governments could consider adopting overlay districts like Adaptation Action Areas or other zoning, land-use, or planning tools to reduce or limit development in wetland and forest migration pathways as a part of comprehensive retreat strategies. 

Related Organizations: Town of Yankeetown, Florida

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Annexing and Preparing Higher Ground Receiving Areas in Princeville, North Carolina Through Post-Disaster Recovery Processes

In 2017, the Town of Princeville, North Carolina engaged experts and communities in a long-term, comprehensive planning process to annex a 53-acre parcel of land located outside of the town’s 100-year floodplain to develop a safer, higher ground area where residents, structures, and infrastructure can be relocated. After experiencing flooding impacts from Hurricane Matthew in 2016, Princeville was selected as one of six municipalities in North Carolina to receive technical and funding support from the state through the Hurricane Matthew Disaster Recovery and Resilience Initiative. Princeville provides an example for other municipalities either in a pre-or post-disaster context for how to balance the preservation of original townships while dealing with flooding vulnerabilities, while increasing the resiliency of core community assets and services through adaptation actions. As done in Princeville, local governments may consider options for relocating vulnerable residences and community facilities and services, including by annexing new land where sufficient higher ground land within existing municipal boundaries is not available to reallocate critical land uses and maintain local communities, tax bases, and economies.

Related Organizations: Town of Princeville, North Carolina

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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