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Coastal Infrastructure and Resilience Research Initiative: The Georgia Coastal Equity and Resilience (CEAR) Hub

Region(s) of Study: U.S. States and Territories / Georgia
This project began September 2022 and is projected to be completed in August 2027.

The Climate Equity and Resilience Hub aims to advance transformative and inclusive resilience tools that address systemic barriers and enhance equitable access to resources and opportunities. The Hub will promote the resilience and sustainability of vulnerable and marginalized Georgia coastal communities through integrative community-driven research, education, training, and outreach to produce equitable, evidence-based, scalable solutions to challenges related to flooding and sea level rise.

Why We Care

Increasingly frequent floods along the Georgia coast have exposed the acute vulnerabilities of low-income and historically underserved residents to the growing threats of sea level rise (SLR), storm surge, and extreme precipitation under continued climate change. These threats often create severe localized flooding that impacts vulnerable communities and further exacerbates existing inequalities. Communities can benefit from frameworks for transdisciplinary research that integrate knowledge and data streams across social, ecological, and environmental dimensions and advance the design and implementation of evidence-based solutions for coastal resilience.

What We Are Doing

The Community-Direct Spending (CDS) funding for a Coastal Infrastructure and Resilience Research Initiative support the establishment of a Climate Equity and Resilience Hub that promotes the resilience and sustainability of vulnerable and marginalized Georgia coastal communities through integrative community-driven research, education, training, and outreach to produce equitable, evidence-based, scalable solutions to challenges related to flooding and sea level rise.

The Hub has three primary objectives: 1) Establish a Stakeholder Decision Support System that combines a hyper-local water level observing sensor network and a coastal modeling system to provide real-time high-resolution and high-frequency flood data that coastal communities can use to plan for and respond to flood emergencies and design resilience and adaptation strategies for the long-term effects of projected flooding and sea-level rise; 2) to develop a Community Support and Engagement Strategy that includes partnerships with the following organizations: City of Savannah, Chatham County Emergency Management Agency, The Harambee House Citizens for Environmental Justice, Pin Point Betterment Association, Coastal Georgia Indicators Coalition, Tybee Marine Science Center, Savannah-Chatham County schools; 3) Bolster community capacity for engagement in coastal resilience research and planning activities through the development of enhanced K-12 programming and targeted workforce development.

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NCCOS delivers ecosystem science solutions for stewardship of the nation’s ocean and coastal resources to sustain thriving coastal communities and economies.

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