NCCOS scientists gave an overview of NOAA’s Ecological Effects of Sea-Level Rise (EESLR) Program at this year’s annual meeting of Alabama floodplain managers held in Orange Beach, Alabama.
The overview highlighted two, sea-level rise planning tools for the northern Gulf of Mexico: maps of future storm surge expected from predicted sea-level rise, and maps of future annual chance stillwater in the floodplain—both generated through new storm surge modeling led by Dr. Matt Bilskie at the Louisiana State University Center for Coastal Resiliency. The new modeling approach produced much discussion among meeting attendees, particularly with those who work closely with FEMA modeling and mapping efforts. Attendees also discussed the potential of adding the stillwater maps to the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affair’s floodplain management website as a non-regulatory data layer. This opportunity is currently being pursued.
Additionally, Renee Collini of the Northern Gulf of Mexico Sentinel Site Cooperative described and welcomed comment on a newly initiated EESLR-funded project that will assess the ability of natural and nature-based coastal features to mitigate surge and nuisance flooding.