Ventura County in Southern California is utilizing the Coastal Resilience approach to engage local communities by illustrating the impacts of inundation, intrusion and river flooding while identifying vulnerable human and natural communities. Building the tools and engaging stakeholders will enable appropriate adaptation solutions.
Within an hour’s drive of an estimated 12 million people, an oasis of plants and animals still attests to the expansive wilderness that once covered Ventura County. Bobcats, mountain lions, deer, songbirds, and raptors traverse this land, and native fish, amphibians and waterfowl occupy its wetlands. And a river runs through it - the Santa Clara - providing an important source of fresh water for communities, ranchers and farmers, and some of southern California’s most critical coastal wetlands. Amazingly, this exists amidst cities, a major military installation, and some of the most high-value agriculture in the nation. All these resources – natural, social, and economic – are threatened by climate-driven changes to the coast and rivers, including sea level rise, accelerated erosion, more intense flooding, and saltwater intrusion into groundwater. Ventura County’s coast needs to be resilient.
The Nature Conservancy is leading Coastal Resilience Ventura - a partnership to provide science and decision-support tools to aid conservation and planning projects and policymaking to address conditions brought about by climate change. The primary goals of Coastal Resilience Ventura are assessing the vulnerabilities of human and natural resources, and identifying solutions that help nature help people.
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