Coastal Resilience Blog

News and perspectives from the DHS Coastal Resilience Center of Excellence at UNC-Chapel Hill

The Links: February 2017

The Links is a monthly roundup of articles from the Center, good reading and job links that have been posted on our website and social media in the last month.

Website news:

CRC in the news:

Good reading:

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Second annual meeting focuses on progress of Center’s 22 projects

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Coastal Resilience Center of Excellence (CRC) researchers, leadership and students – along with federal reviewers and the Center’s Advisory Board – met on Feb. 1-3 for the Center’s second Annual Meeting. Those attending heard updates on the Center’s 22 projects and discussed future Center plans during the 2.5-day meeting.

The CRC’s projects are divided into four central themes – Coastal Infrastructure Resilience; Building Resilient Communities; Disaster Dynamics; and Education and Workforce Development. The 15 research projects and seven education projects are led by researchers across 12 U.S. states and Puerto Rico.

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To view our researchers’ presentations, visit their individual pages on our website.

To see photos from the meeting, see our Flickr album. To see some of our researchers describe their projects, see our YouTube playlist.

The Links – January 2017

The Links is a monthly roundup of good reading, (still relevant) job and event links that have been posted on our website and social media in the last month.

Website news:

CRC in the news:

Good reading: Continue reading

LSU PI launches Center for Coastal Resiliency

By Dr. Scott C. Hagen

Dr. Hagen is a professor at Louisiana State University (LSU) and Principal Investigator (PI) for the Coastal Resilience Center project Development of an optimized tide and hurricane storm surge model for the northern Gulf of Mexico (MS, AL, FL) for use with the ADCIRC Surge Guidance System.” A version of this information originally appeared in the Year 2016 Issue 4 edition of “Hydrolink,” a publication of the International Association for Hydro-Environment Engineering and Research.

Homes flooded near Baton Rouge in August 2016. Credit: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Homes flooded near Baton Rouge in August 2016.
Credit: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Coastal resiliency requires interdisciplinary research with stakeholder involvement to yield results and provide effective tools and products for conducting outreach. Continued advancement of computational models, with integration of precipitation, overland flow, river discharge, tides, wind-waves and surge processes, is essential. However, we must go further and develop a better understanding of the dynamic, interrelated processes of natural and human systems through advanced systems-based models to assess effects of climate change and relative sea-level rise. Continue reading

The Links – December 2016

The Links is a monthly roundup of good reading, (still relevant) job and event links that have been posted on our website and social media in the last month.

Website news:

CRC in the news:

 

Good reading: Continue reading

Maritime Risk Symposium focuses on intersection of coastal and maritime resilience

U.S. Rep. David Price (D-N.C.) speaks to attendees at the 7th Annual Maritime Risk Symposium on Nov. 14, 2016.

U.S. Rep. David Price (D-N.C.) speaks to attendees at the 7th Annual Maritime Risk Symposium on Nov. 14, 2016.

Representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard, the Coastal Resilience Center of Excellence (CRC) and academic and practitioners from around the country came together on Nov. 14-15, 2016, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for the 7th  Annual Maritime Risk Symposium. Members of the military, commercial and academic communities focused on the topic of “Integrating Maritime and Coastal Resilience”. Each of the Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate Office of University Programs Centers of Excellence was represented.

Dr. Austin Becker of the University of Rhode Island presented during the first session,

Dr. Austin Becker of the University of Rhode Island presented during the first session, “Enhancing Resilience of Coastal & Maritime Systems: Port Resilience.” Dr. Becker is a researcher on a Coastal Resilience Center project led by Dr. James Opaluch.

The symposium was organized into five sessions:

  • General Port Resilience
  • Resilience in Houston/Galveston, TX, area

    Dr. Melissa Allen, Post-Doctoral Research Associate, Computational Science and Engineering Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, spoke during the third session, "Enhancing the Resilience of Coastal Infrastructure."

    Dr. Melissa Allen, Post-Doctoral Research Associate, Computational Science and Engineering Division, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, spoke during the third session, “Enhancing the Resilience of Coastal Infrastructure.”

  • Resilience in Coastal Infrastructure
  • Resilience in the Norfolk / Hampton Roads, VA, area
  • Cyber Resilience in the Maritime Transportation System

The 2017 Maritime Risk Symposium will be held at Tiffin University in Tiffin, Ohio, and will focus on cyber-security issues within the Maritime Transportation System.

To see photos, visit our Flickr page.

To view presentations and see abstracts from each panel, visit the event program page.

A full report from the event will be posted online at coastalresiliencecenter.org.

The Links – November 2016

The Links is a monthly roundup of good reading, (still relevant) job and event links that have been posted on our website and social media in the last month.

Website news:

CRC in the news:

Good reading: Continue reading

Integrating Resilience Scorecard into two communities

Jaimie Hicks Masterson is Program Manager for Texas Target Communities at Texas A&M University and a researcher on the Coastal Resilience Center project “Local Planning Networks and Neighborhood Vulnerability Indicators,” led by Principal Investigator Dr. Phil Berke. Masterson writes with an update for the integration of the Resilience Scorecard element of the project, which measures when and where their community plans are in conflict, as well as how well they target areas of the community that are most vulnerable.


Testing
the Scorecard

Location of League City, Tex., relative to Houston. Photo via houstonproperties.com

Location of League City, Tex., relative to Houston. Photo via houstonproperties.com.

We have selected the first pilot community, League City, Tex., and will begin training this month. We began discussing the opportunity with the city in April 2016. The city discussed the project with key stakeholders, such as city staff, city council members, the planning and zoning commission and the emergency management office to seek approval to move forward. This city is a good fit because of:

  • Their exposure to sea-level rise and the 100-year floodplain.
  • The potential for strong networking of multiple local government agencies to influence plan quality and integration.
  • They will soon begin a comprehensive plan update and assessment of all development regulations. The city would like to utilize the Resilience Scorecard to determine priority policy changes.
  • It provides a small/medium-sized city (pop. 88,000) perspective in a politically conservative context.
The waterfront in Norfolk, Va. Photo via norfolkvisitor.com

The waterfront in Norfolk, Va. Photo via norfolkvisitor.com.

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Center researchers, students present at regional climate resilience conference

From Sept. 12-14, Coastal Resilience Center (CRC) researchers and students in CRC education projects presented at the Carolinas Climate Resilience Conference, a biennial meeting convened to provide an opportunity for practitioners and academics to share information about climate-related tools, resources, experiences and activities in North and South Carolina.

 

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Planning for an unknowable future: Uncertainty in climate change adaptation planning

By Sierra C. Woodruff

Sierra C. Woodruff is a PhD candidate at University North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the Curriculum for the Environment and Ecology. Her research focuses on how planning can help communities preserve ecosystem services and reduce the impacts of climate change. She was a student in a Coastal Resilience Center education program at UNC, a graduate certificate in natural hazards resilience, and was a Department of Homeland Security Office of University Programs Graduate Student Climate Preparedness Intern in the summer of 2014. The information discussed below is the basis of a paper published in Climatic Change, available at: http://rdcu.be/kIv2.

 

As a graduate student, there is a lot of uncertainty in my life: When will I finish my degree? Will I get a job? Where will it be?

Sierra Woodruff

Sierra Woodruff

We all confront uncertainty when we plan for the future. Our local governments are no different. They may ask: How will our population grow? What will be our future demand for water?

Today, local governments are also beginning to ask questions about climate change: How much will rainfall patterns change? When will the next drought be? How will it affect our drinking water supply?

The uncertainty in the magnitude and timing of climate change impacts complicates decisions our local governments make about how we should manage our natural resources, where development should occur and how we should design our physical infrastructure. Continue reading

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