Developing Adaptation and Restoration Tools
If coastal communities are to plan effectively for climate change impacts, they have to understand what is most likely to affect the environments in which they live. City councils and county commissions can make decisions about public infrastructure, such as highways, bridges, sewage treatment facilities, and airports that are determined to be vulnerable. Citizens who understand how climate change may affect their property can make proactive decisions about how to respond and adapt.
We are evaluating the relative effectiveness of popular shoreline stabilization approaches, identifying the conditions most appropriate for each stabilization approach, and predicting how each will do in likely climate scenarios. For some climate impacts, such as coral bleaching and the spread of invasive species, we are building predictive models and early warning systems for coastal managers.
We develop science-based tools that guide adaptive management and planning strategies in the coastal zone, where implementation relies on knowledge of past and future trends in conditions. For example, stormwater and nutrient management plans depend highly on whether water conditions and/or impaired uses are likely to change due to climatic factors.