Coastal Resilience Tool Embraced by Local Planning District Commission
In a recent interview, Curt Smith, Director of Planning for Accomack-County Planning District Commission (A-NPDC) spoke about how A-NPDC is using the Coastal Resilience tool to plan for rising seas and coastal flooding.
“This [the Coastal Resilience tool] allows us to see the Shore like we’ve never seen it before.”
“We’re the first area in Virginia to get this,” he said, noting the tool has significantly better resolution than other climate change tools.
Highlighted in the article is the fact that the A-NPDC is using the Flood and Sea Level Rise app to incorporate storm surge information combined with sea-level rise scenarios to revise the local Hazard Mitigation Plan.
“In terms of our abilities to prepare for flooding and for sea-level rise now, we are better positioned than anywhere else in Virginia … So we’ve got a great start in having everything we need to know to come up with solutions and begin working collectively — we’re ready,” Smith said.
Smith described the tool as “a one-stop shop” useful for governments, agencies, businesses and homeowners — “It’s got a little bit of everything for everybody.”
The Accomack-County Planning District Commission is one of the principal partners in The Nature Conservancy’s National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Hurricane Sandy Coastal Resilience Grant project on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.
The A-NPDC is a regional organization that provides planning, community development and housing services to Accomack County, Northampton County, the town of Chincoteague, and other incorporated towns on the Eastern Shore of Virginia.
Notably, the A-NPDC leads Virginia Eastern Shore’s Hazard Mitigation Plan process for the region’s localities and also coordinates the local Eastern Shore Climate Adaptation Working Group, chaired by Curt Smith.
The adaptation working group is a consortium of local governments and organizations dedicated to the regional coordination of planning for future sea-level rise and storms on shore communities.
The Conservancy has worked with the A-NPDC and the climate adaptation working group since its inception in 2010. Developing the Coastal Resilience tool has largely been an outgrowth of this long-standing collaboration and a response to urgent needs of Eastern Shore communities for more localized, high resolution data for adaptation planning.
See related news story in Delmarva Now from April 24, 2016:
“New coastal resilience tool gives glimpse into future” by Carol Vaughn