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Coastal Zone 2011

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“Innovation and Adaptation to a Changing Coastal Climate”

Thursday, July 21, 1011, 10-11:30 AM

Climate change is real; it impacts all of us and the special places that we care about. However, there are actions that we can take to adapt to a changing climate — concrete actions that can lead to a future of vibrant and resilient coastal communities and healthy and productive ecosystems.

Global climate change and its associated impacts pose serious threats to our marine, coastal, and Great Lakes ecosystems and communities. Warming ocean temperatures have a profound impact on the distribution of rainfall over land, the melting of ice sheets, and the distribution and productivity of species. Sea-level rise, increased severe storm events, rapid erosion, and salt water intrusion threaten low-lying coastal communities with the destruction of infrastructure, flood inundation, the potential displacement of millions of people, and the loss of key species and habitats. At the same time, climate change is predicted to lower the water levels of the Great Lakes, thereby altering water cycles and supply, habitat, and economic uses of the Lakes.

This session will be a round table discussion, with national, regional, and local climate adaptation experts discussing their experiences and on the ground examples of adaptation strategies and actions that address these impacts and substantially contribute to our ability to adapt to a changing environment, while still fostering ecological and economic resilience. Case studies from the Great Lakes and elsewhere will be used to prompt broader national, regional, and local discussions and highlight substantial efforts already underway. Media/video excerpts will be used (e.g., projected for audience viewing purposes) throughout the session to prompt group discussion on a variety of adaptation related topics.

Join these respected climate adaptation experts and your Coastal Zone 11 colleagues for our final plenary session as we end our conference by moving forward on Innovation and Adaptation to a Changing Coastal Climate. Opening remarks provided by Eileen Shea.

Margaret Davidson, Director, NOAA Coastal Services Center
Eileen Shea, Chief, Climate Services Division, NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center

Round Table Participants:
Joyce Coffee, Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability at Edelman
Michael Davidson, Midwest Regional Director for ICLEI
Steve Goldbeck, Chief Deputy Director, San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission
Rachel Gregg, Scientist, EcoAdapt
Paul Kirshen, Principal Investigator/Project Manager, Battelle
Lynn Scarlett, Senior Visiting Scholar, Resources for the Future
Eileen Shea (Moderator), Chief, Climate Services Division, NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center


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CZ11 Sponsors The Nature Conservacy Department of the Interior Illinois Natural Resources US Army Corps of Engineers NOAA EPA