ANNOUNCING AWF’S FIRST VIRTUAL COMMUNITY ADAPTATION LEADERSHIP FORUM
Join us on Thursday, September 5, 2019 from 10:00 am – 11:30 amfor a virtual Community Adaptation Forum. As communities across the Gulf Coast are dealing with the effects of sea level rise and stronger and longer lasting storms impact our coasts, AWF will help build consensus for moving from resiliency to adaptation. Headlining this event will be Chip Kline, Chairman, Louisiana Coastal Protection Authority, and other coastal leaders. Understanding and adapting to the “new normal” includes agencies of at all levels of government re-aligning strategic plans to account for changing coastal conditions. Kline will provide an insight into defining the change ahead and the program will suggest ways that coastal communities can be strengthened through adaptation strategies and tools that take advantage of the natural environment. This webinar will be held in cooperation with AWF’s partner, eRotary Coastal, and is supported by
LOUISIANA COASTAL EXCHANGE (LCX)
The America’s WETLAND Foundation (AWF) is working with Gulf Coast communities to address a challenge that is literally at their doorstep – how to remain viable in the wake of sea level rise. AWF is currently developing, in conjunction with our upcoming adaptation forums, a program called “Sea Save Community Certification” (SSCC). This initiative will establish a path to private sustainability and adaptation in coastal towns and cities.
As the threat of flooding and destructive weather events ramps up in the public consciousness, and with it, the perception of at-risk and non-insurable property is starting to negatively impact local communities and their economies. It is unknown when the tipping point of irreversible public perception of decreased property value will be reached but a slide in public confidence is inevitable without a strong adaptation strategy.
Through the Sea Safe Communities Certification Program, AWF will work with coastal populations across the Gulf Coast to develop adaptation strategies that move beyond planning and into real action, generating public support for stabilizing strong investment across the Gulf South. The program represents a continuation of Foundation initiatives that hosted the first community resiliency assessments in each zip code of the Gulf Coast in 2011-2012, where it was found in an Entergy-sponsored Swiss-re/McKenzie study that local and state economies of the region will be challenged to finance lost infrastructure attributed to sea level rise, climate change and stronger, longer lasting storm event.
As communities make progress with criteria demonstrating action toward adaptation, they will be certified as Sea Safe Communities. The designation is important in that it denotes taking critical steps to reduce vulnerabilities that threaten a community’s future economic viability due to the rising tide. These designations are essential for communities to avoid the stigma of investments being considered a bad risk, which can impact real estate, local tax revenue and public services.
Sea Safe Community Certification aligns with the Dutch concept of living with water and building with nature. It is about fortifying economies as well as environmental assets to ensure sustainability and a viable future. And, SSCC programming is about defining opportunities beyond managed retreat and advancing new careers and economic progress with traditional and new coastal industries, including restoration sciences and services.
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