News from Our Partners
Climate adaptation and preparedness are issues that today’s planners need to be ready to handle. Knowing that, the American Planning Association has leveraged its partnership with the Digital Coast to highlight adaptation and planning tools and resources from the Digital Coast and beyond. Read the blog to learn more, and visit the association’s website to find other valuable resources.
Restore America’s Estuaries put together a report on the state of the nation’s living shorelines and what can be done to increase their usage. The report details what institutional barriers are hindering the broader use of living shorelines and recommends appropriate actions to remove those barriers. The report does not delve into the scientific benefits and technical merits of using living shorelines.
As the focus on hazards and resilience in the world of planning increases, so does the amount of literature on the subject. The American Planning Association posted a review of all of the books published in the last year on this topic. The reviews are intended to highlight new resources, while offering some comparisons on the focus and practical value the authors provide.
The Northwest Tribal Emergency Management Council is hosting the 2nd Annual National Tribal Emergency Management Conference, August 10-14, 2015. The council is composed of and serves tribes in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska, while the conference is open to tribes throughout the nation. The conference allows tribes to gather and share information on homeland security, emergency management, and public health issues as they pertain to Native nations.
Summer in the Great Lakes is a time for fun in the sun on the shores of the lakes. But dangerous waves and currents can turn a wonderful relaxing day into a nightmare. A new initiative from Sea Grant programs and partners in the Great Lakes aims to educate young adults, parents, and children to “Be Current Smart.” The campaign includes tips, key messages, and additional resources for parents.
Coastal hazards are increasing in frequency, but using the Global Hazard Atlas could give you an edge in planning ahead. This tool allows users to see every current hazard throughout the world, including hurricanes, tsunamis, wildfires, earthquakes, and more. And there’s an app for that—for iOS or Android.
New Hampshire’s GIS Clearinghouse created a data viewer using a variety of spatial data sets to assist planners and community managers. The viewer includes basic coastal information as well as hazards data for all 42 coastal watershed communities. The project will help community members identify coastal hazards and their associated risks in order to better plan for the future.
With the increased threat of sea level rise and coastal flooding, the number of tools to assist community managers has grown exponentially. However, not all of these viewers are created equally. Climate Central developed a matrix for California that dives into the differences between the tools, their geographic ranges, and some of their features. The goal was to provide the planning community with a way to quickly determine which tool is most relevant to their needs. The matrix includes tools from The Nature Conservancy, NOAA, Climate Central, and a variety of California agencies and organizations.
The American Planning Association approved the formation of a new division within the larger organization. The Hazard Mitigation and Disaster Recovery Planning Division is a community of professionals all focused on hazard mitigation that offers possibilities to discuss ideas and contribute to national policy work. The association believes there is a logical connection between the planning work they have done in the past and this sort of disaster preparation planning. In recent years, planners have noticed that mitigation and recovery are enhanced when linked to the community’s comprehensive plan. This division will aim for more of those linkages.
Oftentimes, small communities do not have the resources to do involved economic valuations of their local beaches. Without an accurate value, it can be difficult to persuade stakeholders to support maintaining these areas. However, a director emeritus of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Engineer Research and Development Center believes there’s a way. The paper, published in Shore & Beach journal, used Folly Beach, South Carolina, as an example of an area with a small amount of tourism and a strong need for economic valuation. This process allows the community to make estimates of tourist spending, jobs, taxes, and the recreational and ecological values of its beaches.