Projects

Places where CAW-related projects have taken place.

Locations where CAW-related projects have taken place in coastal NH and Maine.

Since 2009, CAW partner organizations have worked together and partnered with communities on 46 projects totaling $5,452,077 in grant funding. This is a list of completed and ongoing projects that CAW partner organizations work on to help New Hampshire coastal communities become more resilient to climate change impacts and extreme weather events. If you would like more information about any of these projects, please contact Kirsten Howard (kirsten.howard@des.nh.gov).

Project Title: Tides to Storms 2 – Adaptation Implementation
Source of Funds: Northeast Regional Ocean Council
PI(s):
Julie LaBranche (RPC)
Award Amount:
$50,000
Award Period:
November 2015- September 2016
Description: The Rockingham Planning Commission (RPC) has received a grant from the Northeast Region Ocean Council to provide technical assistance to the seven Atlantic coastal municipalities to implement recommended strategies from the Tides to Storms Vulnerability Assessment. RPC is pleased to offer each municipality $6,000 in direct technical assistance for services beginning November 9, 2015 through September 14, 2016. The project goal is to focus municipal efforts to adopt or implement adaptation strategies, improve municipal and community resilience to coastal flooding, protect public health and safety, and increase awareness of coastal flood risks and hazards. This assistance can include support for one or several ongoing or new projects providing the projects can be accomplished within the grant period and within available funding limits. Activities eligible for funding include update or preparation of plans, policy development, regulatory amendments, land conservation and restoration plans, and public outreach.
Categories: On the Ground Actions; Community Capacity

Project Title: Exploring the trends, the science, and the options of buffer management in the Great Bay Watershed

Source of Funds: NERRS Science Collaborative

PI(s): Cory Riley (GBNERR), David Patrick (TNC), Steve Couture (DES) and Mary Ann Tilton (DES); Jamie Houle (UNHSC), Tom Ballestero (UNHSC), Steve Miller (GBNERR), Paul Stacey (GBNERR), Rachel Stevens (GBNERR); Pete Steckler (TNC); Kalle Matso (PREP); Michelle Holt Shannon (NH Listens/Carsey), Rob Johnston (Clark University).

Award Amount: $249, 528

Award Period: September 2015- August 2017

Description: This project’s goal is to enhance stakeholder capacity to make informed decisions related to the protection and restoration of buffers around New Hampshire’s Great Bay Estuary. The project will be integrating existing geospatial information and the best available buffer science with economic valuation data about the benefits of buffers. This watershed scale information will then be used to select a subwatershed to work within to determine what combination of incentive and regulatory solutions can best promote good buffers around Great Bay.

Categories: Community Capacity; Research and Assessment, On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Berwick, ME

Source of funds: PREP

PI: John Stoll (Town of Berwick, ME)

Award Amount: $5,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: This project addresses three of the four recommendations for Berwick, ME following the publication of the 2015 Piscataqua Region Environmental Planning Assessment. The project has three goals: (1) increase shoreland setbacks for primary structures to 100’; (2) adopt 100’ fertilizer application buffers on lakes and ponds; (3) adopt managed buffer width of 100’. Each of these goals will increase protection for water quality and build resiliency for the Town of Berwick in response to increase precipitation associated with climate change.

Categories: Regulations; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Exeter, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Kristen Murphy (Town of Exeter, NH)

Award Amount: $6,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: Nitrogen loading in the Great Bay Estuary and associated tributaries is a concern for many communities within the Piscataqua Region watershed. With increasing precipitation from climate change, Exeter aims to improve fertilizer application setbacks within their community to reduce nitrogen loading. This project address one of the four recommendations for Exeter, NH from the 2015 PREPA report.

Categories: Regulations; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Greenland, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Mark Fougere (Town of Greenland, NH)

Award Amount: $5,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: Greenland, NH will be working to adopt the Southeast Watershed Alliance model stormwater ordinance. The model ordinance aims to consider projected changes in climate within the design, siting and implementation of stormwater infrastructure. Adopting the model ordinance will increase resiliency within Greenland in response to climate change.

Categories: Regulations; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Hampton, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Jason Bachand & Rayann Dionne (Town of Hampton)

Award Amount: $10,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: Hampton will strengthen its commitment to better floodplain management and implement positive measure to reduce flood risks associated with sea-level rise and coastal storms through participation in the FEMA Community Rating System (CRS). The CRS is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum National Flood Insurance Program requirements. Additionally, participation in the CRS will create strong incentives among town residents to improve buffer protection and management—key PREPA action items identified for Hampton, NH.

Categories: Community Capacity; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Kittery, ME

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Jessa Kellogg (Town of Kittery, ME)

Award Amount: $10,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: The Town of Kittery Public Works and Code Enforcement Offices plan to complete a full assessment of the stream and river crossing culverts between 1’ and 3’ diameter on Town of Kittery maintained roadways. Preliminary field assessments have indicated that many of these smaller culverts are undersized leading to a potential threat to human health and water quality. Culverts will be assessed on location, stability, and sizing as it related to increased precipitation events relating to climate change. The culverts will be prioritized (high, medium, low) for the need for replacement.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: New Castle, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Lynn McCarthy

Award Amount: $10,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: The New Castle Conservation Commission proposes to focus on the top priority action to increase buffers to 100’ for all waterbodies as listed under the 2015 PREPA recommendations. The Conservation Commission also proposes to increase protection efforts for the Lavenger Creek salt marsh that will involve proposing more stringent regulatory standards and/or prime wetlands designation. This project builds upon the work to reduce and manage invasive species cover around the Lavenger Creek salt marsh.

Categories: Regulations; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: North Hampton, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Jennifer Rowden (Rockingham Planning Commission)

Award Amount: $4,745.40

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: The 2015 PREPA identified adoption of the Southeast Watershed Alliance model stormwater ordinance as one of the four priority actions for North Hampton, NH. The model ordinance aims to consider projected changes in climate within the design, siting and implementation of stormwater infrastructure. Adopting the model ordinance is a proactive and cost effective way for the town to address stormwater pollution and increased runoff from projected increases in precipitation associated with climate change.

Categories: Regulations; Planning

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Rollinsford, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Suzanne Huard (City of Rollinsford, NH)

Award Amount: $6,500

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: The 2015 PREPA identified adoption of the Southeast Watershed Alliance model stormwater ordinance as one of the four priority actions for Rollinsford, NH. The model ordinance aims to consider projected changes in climate within the design, siting and implementation of stormwater infrastructure. Adopting the model ordinance is a proactive and cost effective way for the town to address stormwater pollution and increased runoff from projected increases in precipitation associated with climate change. Throughout the process Rollinsford also plans to inventory stormwater related issues and assess current stormwater management practices.

Categories: Regulations; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Rye, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Kimberly Reed (Town of Rye, NH)

Award Amount: $10,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: Rye will institutionalize its commitment to better floodplain management—a critical focus as sea levels continue to rise and coastal storms intensify—through participation in the FEMA Community Rating System (CRS). The CRS is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum National Flood Insurance Program requirements. Additionally, participation in the CRS will create strong incentives among town residents to improve buffer protection and management—key PREPA action items identified for Rye, NH.

Categories: Community Capacity; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Somersworth, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: David Sharples (City of Somersworth, NH)

Award Amount: $7,200

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: The City of Somersworth proposes to complete a natural resource inventory to guide short and long term land conservation priorities. A natural resource inventory is a tool for communities to gain a better understanding of their existing natural resource values and to establish a sustainable approach for land use planning and management in response to climate change.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: PREPA Grant: Stratham, NH

Source of funds: PREP

PI: Paul Deschaine (Town of Stratham, NH)

Award Amount: $10,000

Award Period: August 2015-October 2016

Description: Stratham proposes to explore all four of the proposed recommendations from the 2015 Piscataqua Region Environmental Planning Assessment and adopt as appropriate. The four recommendations are: (1) increase buffers to 100’ for tidal wetlands; (2) increase septic and structure setbacks to 100’ for freshwater wetlands; (3) adopt fertilizer application setbacks for all waterbodies; and (4) adopt model stormwater management regulations. Each of these goals will increase protection for water quality and build resiliency for the Town of Stratham in response to increase precipitation associated with climate change.

Categories: Regulations, On the Ground Action

 

Project Title: Climate Ready Culverts and Coastal Communities: Vulnerability Assessment for Coastal Communities

Source of Funds: NOAA through Project of Special Merit

PI: Steve Couture (DES Coastal Program)

Award Amount: $190,398

Award Period: September 2015 – March 2017

Description: This project team is assessing climate change impacts to natural systems and the built environment for ten coastal municipalities. Results of the assessment will help municipalities apply climate impact data directly into programmatic changes such as facilities (infrastructure upgrades and priorities), permit processes, codes, and regulations. The project results will be built into a developing web-based platform (NH Coastal Viewer). The UNH Stormwater Center, Rockingham Planning Commission and Strafford Regional Planning Commission will assess the impact of climate change on culvert performance, and natural resources and infrastructure due to tidal changes from sea level rise and storm surge and produce mapping and assessment tools to inform municipal plans and decision making. RPC and SRPC will complete a vulnerability analysis of sea-level rise and storm flooding, working closely with each of their municipalities to incorporate information into hazard mitigation plans. The UNH Stormwater Center will complete a culvert analysis based on future climate conditions including projected increases in the frequency and magnitude of extreme precipitation events.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Regulation

 

Project Title: Climate Adaptation for Road Infrastructure in Coastal New Hampshire

Source of Funds:   NH Sea Grant

PI(s): Jo Sias Daniel, Jennifer Jacobs, Paul Kirshen, Jayne Knott (UNH, ICNET, and UCIRC)

Award Amount: $130,000

Award Period: October 2014 – September 30, 2016

Description: This research will assess the impacts of climate change and sea-level rise on road infrastructure in Coastal New Hampshire. Specific attention is given to reduction in pavement performance with rising ground water, temperatures, and extreme precipitation events. The research will develop the data and tools needed to assess climate impacts on roadways and will investigate various adaptation strategies through case studies. A NH Seacoast Transportation Climate Working Group consisting of regional planners, transportation engineers and road agents has been established to inform the research and to make the results available and useful for regional stakeholders.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: RiskMAP FY14 – Developing Areas of Mitigation Interest and Conducting Discovery

Source of Funds: FEMA

PI: Fay Rubin

Award Amount: $137,822

Award Period: October 1, 2014 – September 30, 2016

Description: This award comprises two distinct project activities. The first activity is to generate an “Areas of Mitigation Interest” data set for the 13 communities in Rockingham County and 4 communities in Strafford County that are within the footprint of the NH Coastal Mapping project described above.   The flood risk data are being developed based on accessing existing statewide, regional, and community data sets, as well as collecting current localized knowledge from community officials. Once complete, the data will be incorporated into the FEMA Flood Risk Database for each county and will be accessible from the FEMA Map Service Center. The second activity is to conduct “Discovery” in the 13 communities in Rockingham, Strafford, and Carroll Counties that are part of the Piscataqua/Salmon Falls Basin but outside of the footprint of the NH Coastal Mapping project. The goal of this effort is to work closely with the individual communities to help identify areas at risk for flooding and possible solutions for reducing that risk. New Zone A (approximate) flood zone boundaries will be generated as part of this effort and will be compared to the effective data. This information, along with additional input provided by the project communities, will be used to determine priorities for future floodplain mapping.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Community Capacity

 

Project Title: Assessment of Hydrologic Change due to Climate Change in New Hampshire: Simulation of Current and Future Water Streamflow, Snowmelt, and Groundwater Recharge Using the Precipitation Runoff Modeling System

Source of Funds: NOAA through the NHDES Coastal Program

PI: Joseph Ayotte (U.S. Geological Survey)

Award Amount: $80,000

Award Period: February 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016

Description: This project builds on work already completed that developed a watershed runoff model for the Long Island Sound Watershed, including the Connecticut, Thames, and Housatonic Rivers (Bjerklie and others, 2011), and a U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) New England Regional Precipitation Runoff Modeling System (PRMS) model that has been developed as part of a USGS effort to build a continental scale National Hydrology Model (Lauren Hay and Steve Markstrom, personal communication 2014). The models run in New Hampshire for current and future climate change scenarios, giving users an enhanced understanding of possible changes to streamflow, snowmelt, and groundwater recharge to be expected in New Hampshire as a result of climate change.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Building Resilience to Flooding and Climate Change in the Moonlight Brook Watershed

Source of Funds: NOAA through competitive NHDES Coastal Program Resiliency Technical Assistance Grants

PI: Diane Hardy (Newmarket) and Rob Roseen (Horsley Witten Group, Inc.)

Award Amount: $57,793

Award Period: March 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016

Description: Moonlight Brook is an important tributary of the Lamprey River drainage basin. Several flood resiliency and risk studies have been performed in the Lamprey River watershed including the Moonlight Brook subwatershed. The project team is conducting a two part effort to: 1) to study flood risk associated with climate change as well as how future development and build out of the community affect these risks, and 2) design robust green infrastructure practices within the Moonlight Brook watershed to help reduce risk of flooding while reducing pollutant load into the Brook and further downstream into the Lamprey River and ultimately Great Bay.

Categories: Research and Assessment; On the Ground Actions

 

Project Title: Analysis of Water Resources to Supplement the Land Conservation Plan for New Hampshire’s Coastal Watershed

Source of Funds: NOAA through the NHDES Coastal Program

PI: Mark Zankel (TNC), The Nature Conservancy

Award Amount: $45,998

Award Period: March 2015 – May 2016

Description: This project builds upon and provides an update to The Land Conservation Plan for New Hampshire’s Coastal Watersheds (2006), which identified land protection priorities on a watershed scale. The purpose of this project is to conduct spatial analyses to identify lands that, if protected, will (1) benefit water quality in the coastal watershed, (2) attenuate flood flows and mitigate flood risks, and (3) secure public drinking water supplies. The results of this project include new data showing land protection priorities that would mitigate flood risk, reduce pollution and improve the protection of drinking water supplies for planners, municipal staff, volunteer board members, land trusts, agency staff, and others.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Planning

 

Project Title: Implementing Phase I of the Lubberland Creek Culvert Restoration and Initiating the Development of NH’s Tidal Culvert Assessment Protocol

Source of Funds: NOAA through competitive NHDES Coastal Program Resiliency Technical Assistance Grants

PI: Peter Steckler, The Nature Conservancy

Award Amount: $56,650

Award Period: February 1, 2015 – May 31, 2016

Description: Task 1 – Phase I : Culvert replacement at the Bay Road crossing of Lubberland Creek in Newmarket achieves three primary goals: (1) restoration of aquatic connectivity at the system’s tidal/freshwater interface allowing diadromous fish passage at the perched Bay Road culvert, (2) enhancement of the resilience of Lubberland Creek salt marsh by removal of the existing tidal restriction at Bay Road with a structure that allows upstream salt marsh migration as sea levels continue to rise, and (3) remediation of the flood hazard of this road-stream crossing, which overtops during major flood events and thereby compromises public safety. Task 2 – Initiation of the Development of NH’s Tidal Culvert Assessment Protocol: Creation of a tidal culvert assessment protocol via review of best practices for tidal culvert assessments through existing literature, computer models and expert interviews, as well as the assembly of a group of experts in an effort to build consensus and justification for characteristics measured as part of a field-based tidal assessment protocol.

Categories: On the Ground Action; Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: New Hampshire Great Bay Estuary Ecosystem Services Assessment

Source of Funds: NOAA Coastal Services Center Coastal Management Fellowship, TNC/Moore Foundation, PREP

PI: Kirsten Howard, NHDES Coastal Program

Award Amount: Personnel time for a full time NOAA Fellow for two years. Non-federal match = $15,000, NOAA Grant $84,930

Award Period: September 2013 – May 2016

Description: This project helps to build a spatial planning framework for the Great Bay estuary, with an emphasis on successfully utilizing ecosystem services modeling to better integrate and scale-up ongoing estuarine habitat restoration work while minimizing conflicts with siting and permitting decisions pertaining to other space-dependent estuarine uses (e.g. mooring fields, marinas, aquaculture leases). The project integrates existing spatial information on climate change vulnerability into the estuarine spatial planning framework. This objective ensures that a recently completed effort to generate high quality coastal vulnerability maps for every coastal town in New Hampshire under scenarios of sea level rise and storm surge is incorporated into holistic spatial planning efforts for the state’s estuaries.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Planning

 

Project Title: NH Coastal Mapping Project

Source of funds: FEMA

PI: Fay Rubin

Award Amount: $648,990

Award Period: September 21, 2010 – December 31, 2015 (to be extended)

Description: This project will result in new Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (DFIRMs) and Flood Insurance Studies (FISs) for the downstream portions of the Piscataqua/Salmon Falls Basin (HUC 8 Watershed 01060003), including the ocean coastline in New Hampshire. The study area comprises 239 square miles, and includes the 17 communities that lie within New Hampshire’s designated Coastal Zone. High resolution LiDAR topographic data is being used to support new and/or updated modeling and mapping of the study area.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: NH Coastal Risk MAP Product Development

Source of Funds: FEMA

PI: Fay Rubin

Award Amount: $180,000

Award Period: September 13, 2011 – December 31, 2015 (to be extended)

Description: This objective of this project is to produce a suite of non-regulatory, Risk MAP products to accompany the updated floodplain maps described above for the NH Coastal Mapping project. Collectively, they extend the utility of the maps and reports, encourage community utilization and understanding, and facilitate more efficient floodplain management. Products to be developed include Changes Since Last DFIRM (a comparison of the new floodplain data relative to the effective data), Limit of Moderate Wave Action (an informational layer on the floodplain maps that defines the limit of the 1.5-0 foot wave), Coastal Flood Depth Grids (containing coastal water depths for the 1% Base Flood Elevation), Riverine Flood Depth Grids (containing riverine water depths), Static Sea Level Rise, and the results of Hazus analyses for Rockingham and Strafford Counties (showing potential annualized losses from flooding).   These non-regulatory products will be entered into a Flood Risk Map, Report, and Database, all of which will be available from the FEMA Map Service Center.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: NH Shoreline Structure Inventory

Source of funds: NHDES Coastal Program

PI: Kirsten Howard, NHDES Coastal Program

Award Amount: $4,500 in the form of an intern to support the effort

Award Period: May 2015 – October 2015

Description: The NHDES Coastal Program is creating a spatial inventory of engineered shoreline structures along the New Hampshire tidal shoreline. This inventory will be developed for the NH Coastal Viewer, to include information about the structure type, elevation, and size, among other attributes. The inventory will be used to inform vulnerability assessments for these structures in the future.

Categories: Research and Assessment

Project Title: Tides to Storms

Source of Funds: Homeland Security and Emergency Management/FEMA

PI: Rockingham Planning Commission (RPC)

Award Amount: $118,980

Award Period: November 2012 – September 2015

Description: This project includes 1) Production of a regional vulnerability assessment report and map set for NH coastal communities, utilizing the best available information to assess the impacts of climate change on land, natural resources and infrastructure, and provide detailed maps, risk and impact analyses, and adaptation and mitigation strategies to address the projected future effects of sea level rise and storm surge; 2) Development of a model Coastal Flood, Hazards and Adaptation Chapter to be incorporated within coastal community Hazard Mitigation Plans; 3) Local Hazard Mitigation Plan updates in each eligible coastal community to specifically incorporate the vulnerability assessment including development of adaptation and mitigation strategies that address the projected future effects of sea level rise and storm surge; 4) Development of outreach and guidance tools to enhance preparedness, create capacity and improve resiliency in the built environment, human health and safety, and natural systems; 5) Incorporation of Coastal Flood, Hazards and Adaptation Chapter into local Hazard Mitigation Plans and other state plans.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Planning; Community Capacity

 

Project Title: The Hard and Soft of Shoreline Management: Conference and Follow-up Outreach

Source of funds: UNH NERRS Science Collaborative, NHDES Coastal Program, NH Charitable Foundation

PI: Steve Miller

Award Amount: UNH NSC $26,709, NHCP $2000 in the form of conference registration fee waivers for municipal decision makers, NHCF $5000

Award Period: May 2014 – August 2015

Description: In December 2014 the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, and our partners in CAW hosted a conference focused on improving shoreline management in NH. 121 individuals attended this conference including coastal decision makers from the NH Coastal Risks and Hazards Commission, state agencies, municipalities, and NOAA, as well as shoreline professionals and experts such as engineers, environmental consultants, and researchers. Conference participants learned about and discussed how and why we manage shorelines in NH and explored how we can better manage shorelines to protect the natural, cultural, and economic resources that are impacted by shoreline management decisions. The centerpiece of the conference was presentation on “living shoreline” treatments that have been tested in in New York and New Jersey. Conference development was informed by a needs assessment conducted by GBNERR. The conference was followed by a half day workshop where select partners, presenters, and conference participants debriefed the workshop and discussed what shoreline management topics still need outreach support in NH. To continue the dialog that was started at the conference, CAW has been and will continue holding workshops that target specific shoreline management topics including: wetland and shore and permitting in NH, protecting coastal cultural resources, and a field based workshop focused on the protection provided by dunes. More follow-up workshops are expected in 2016. Additionally, CAW members are publishing an ongoing Shoreline Management Story Series to highlight how and why shoreline management is done in coastal NH. These articles have been and will continue to be published on NHCAW.org.

Categories: Community Capacity

 

Project Title: Hampton-Seabrook Estuary Sand Dune Restoration

Source of Funds: NOAA through competitive NHDES Coastal Program Resiliency Technical Assistance Grants

PI: Alyson Eberhardt, New Hampshire Sea Grant/UNH Cooperative Extension

Award Amount: $73,656

Award Period: March 1, 2015 – June 30, 2015

Description: NH Sea Grant/UNH Cooperative Extension (NHSG/UNHCE) and the University of New Hampshire (UNH) work to build coastal resilience to climate change and enhance landforms and wildlife habitat through the restoration of several dune habitats in the Hampton-Seabrook Estuary watershed. Vegetation is critical to the growth and the stability of dunes; therefore, a revegetation program engaging community members and NH Sea Grant’s Coastal Research Volunteers focuses on the impacted areas. Efforts to limit pathways for beach access through all project areas include extensive outreach, educational signs, and structural fencing to divert pedestrians to designated pathways. Local citizens are engaged throughout the project in order to accomplish on the ground restoration goals and to create a network of informed citizens and landowners.

Categories: On the Ground Actions; Community Capacity

Project Title: Resilient NH Coasts

Source of Funds: NOAA Project of Special Merit

PI: Steve Couture (NHDES Coastal Program), Fay Rubin; (GRANIT), Amanda Stone and Chris Keeley (NROC); David Burdick (JEL), Shane Csiki (NHDES Fluvial Erosion Hazards Program); Great Bay Stewards

Award Amount: $200,000

Award Period: October 1, 2013 – April 30, 2015

Description: This project advanced resiliency and adaptation planning for climate change related hazards by integrating tools, research, outreach, and technical assistance in the Hampton-Seabrook estuary, Dover, and Portsmouth. Outreach was also conducted to business groups throughout NH Seacoast communities. New information generated by this project included updated and expanded Sea Level Affecting Marsh Migration (SLAMM) model outputs, and current information about Fluvial Erosion Hazards. The project’s integrated and innovative approach enabled project partners to learn how communities want to use and access coastal data and GIS tools in hazards and climate adaptation planning, and what steps can be taken to ensure that climate related science is relevant to local needs. The project partners collaborated on a NH Coastal Viewer product that incorporates data to help planning state agencies, commissions, municipalities, and businesses visualize what areas in their communities are the most vulnerable to coastal hazards, including sea level rise and river flooding. http://des.nh.gov/organization/divisions/water/wmb/coastal/resilient-coast.htm

Categories: Research and Assessment; Planning

 

Project Title: Piscataqua Region Environmental Planning Assessment

Source of funds: PREP, EPA

PI: Jill Farrell

Award Amount: $12,000

Award Period: October 2014-March 2015

Description: The 2015 Piscataqua Region Environmental Planning Assessment (PREPA) is designed to provide an updated information base to inform ongoing and emerging planning and environmental protection efforts, and to identify gaps and inconsistencies in the standards of environmental protection reflected in the current ordinances, development regulations, and natural resource protection strategies in each of the 52 municipalities. The 2015 PREPA also gathered information on municipal land use policies and adaptation planning strategies designed to mitigate the impacts of climate change on the Piscataqua Region watershed.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Planning

 

Project Title: Climate Change and Human Health in New Hampshire: An Impact Assessment

Source of funds: NH Department of Health and Human Services

PI: Cameron Wake

Award Amount: $30,000

Award Period: July 2013 – December 2014

Description:   This report provides an overview of past and future climate across New Hampshire has changed, and the potential impact of future climate change on human health in New Hampshire based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Building Resilience Against Climate Effects (BRACE) framework. The report is organized by the type of health impact:

  • Temperature, heat events, and heat stress injury/death
  • Extreme weather and injury/death
  • Temperature, air quality, and respiratory and cardiovascular illness
  • Pollen, mold, and allergies
  • Temperature, precipitation, and vector-borne diseases
  • Temperature, precipitation, severe weather, and foodborne diseases
  • Temperature, precipitation, and waterborne diseases
  • Climate change, health behaviors, and chronic disease
  • Climate change, mental health, and stress-related disorders

Report website: http://www.climatesolutionsne.org/sites/climatesolutionsne.org/files/candhreport4.30.pdf

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Preparing for Climate Change in Rye

Source of funds: NHDES Coastal Program

PI: Amanda Stone (UNHCE), Chris Keeley (NH SeaGrant/UNHCE), Julie LaBranche (RPC)

Award Amount: $15,000

Award Period: July 1, 2013 – December 31, 2014

Description: Project staff and a local steering committee organized a workshop series about climate change in Rye. The workshops introduced the science and local impacts of climate change, delivered an overview of planning tools to adapt to climate change, hosted a walking tour to understand how salt marshes are affected by sea level rise and how they contribute to resiliency, and transitioned the town’s participation into a follow up project (Tides to Storms). In addition to reported increases in knowledge, the community generated a list of prioritized concerns and began a dialogue about possible action items to adapt to climate change.

Categories: Community Capacity

 

Project Title: Sustaining Champions of Climate Adaptation in Coastal Communities: A Northern New England Study

Source of funds: NH Sea Grant Doyle Fellowship

PI: Julia Peterson

Award Amount: $3000

Award Period: June 2014 – September 2014

Description: In this study, community members identified by others as “climate adaptation champions” from coastal areas in northern Massachusetts to southern Maine were interviewed. The interviews were designed to reveal what motivates and sustains these champions, what challenges and accomplishments they claim and what professional adaptation assistance providers can do to help support champions in implementing climate adaptation at the local level. A total of eight findings were developed from the champions’ responses during the interviews as well as a set of recommendations for professional climate adaptation assistance providers. The study was conducted by a UNH undergraduate student, Alexandra Phillip, with assistance from four mentors affiliated with NH’s Coastal Adaptation Workgroup. The final report, including findings and recommendations, can be found here: https://seagrant.unh.edu/sites/seagrant.unh.edu/files/media/pdfs/extension/climate_champions_2014.pdf

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Building the Capacity of Coastal Communities to Address Climate Change Risks Through the Use of Role-Play Simulations

Source of Funds: NERRS Science Collaborative

PI: Lawrence Susskind (MIT)

Award Amount: $637,023

Award Period: September 2012 – August 2014

Description: The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Science Impact Collaborative worked with four National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) sites, and the Consensus Building Institute to test an innovative way to help coastal communities understand and prepare for the potential impacts of climate change. The team engaged four at-risk New England towns in testing the use of role-play simulations as a means to educate the public about climate change threats and to help communities explore ways of decreasing their vulnerability and enhancing their resilience. The findings of this project provided valuable insights into techniques for engaging communities in public learning, risk management, and collaborative decision-making around science-intensive public disputes. They also informed the development of a model approach that communities in New England and elsewhere can use to address climate change. In NH, this project worked with the City of Dover.

Categories: Community Capacity; Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Collaborative Planning for Climate Change Adaptation: A Case Study in Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve

Source of Funds: NERRS Science Collaborative

PI: Paul Kirshen (UNH), University of New Hampshire

Award Amount: $683,472

Award Period: September 1, 2012 – August 31, 2014

Description: The project undertook a collaborative planning effort to develop an integrated climate change adaptation plan for a land area exhibiting a range of land uses and location on a major tributary to the Great Bay Estuary. While the focus is on climate change, the project also considered the exacerbation, and remedies, for related challenges of stormwater, nonpoint source pollution, land use/development and the protection and restoration of habitat (marshes and fisheries habitat). The case study area is the Town of Exeter within the Exeter/Squamscott River Basin, which includes most of the town’s area just upstream of Great Bay. However, because portions of other towns share the watershed, their contributions to the targeted impacts on the river system were assessed to provide a comprehensive analysis the will yield an integrated management strategy. Benefits include an adaptation strategy for Exeter that can be incorporated into zoning ordinances, and site regulations that benefits not only the town but also Great Bay, and serve as a transferable model for collaborative and integrated adaptation planning.

Categories: Planning

 

Project Title: Crossing Boundaries: Integrated Planning in the Exeter – Squamscott Watershed

Source of Funds: National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration, NERRS Science Collaborative

PIs: Robert Roseen and Renee Bourdeau, Geosyntec; Alison Watts, University of New Hampshire Stormwater Center; Doug Thompson, The Consensus Building Institute; Cliff Sinnott, Rockingham Planning Commission; Steve Miller and Paul Stacey, Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve

Award Amount: $425,000

Award Period: September 1, 2013 – August 31, 2014

Description: This project developed the foundation for an Exeter-Squamscott Watershed Integrated Plan for the communities of Exeter, Stratham, and Newfields in southern New Hampshire. The Plan helped communities meet new wastewater and stormwater permit requirements and improve water quality in the Squamscott River and the Great Bay, while supporting the economic viability of participating communities. This project developed a management plan for three communities that allows them to evaluate and manage water quality and climate impacts at the scale of the Exeter/Squamscott subwatershed project area.

Categories: Planning

 

Project Title: Green Infrastructure for Sustainable Coastal Communities

Source of Funds: NERRS Science Collaborative

PI: Robert Roseen, University of New Hampshire

Award Amount: $589,838

Award Period: September 1, 2012 – August 31, 2014

Description: The project proposed to build municipal capacity in coastal watershed communities for Green Infrastructure by engaging local and regional stakeholders in a planning and implementation process that was supported by technical resources and current, relevant information. The goal of creating a collaborative process was to build community resilience and improve capacity for managing water resources and related ecosystem services. The project provided a wide range of resources and numerous models and examples of regulatory and technical approaches for the implementation of green infrastructure (GI). Drawing upon knowledge gained from previously funded programs, we worked with local community leaders, regional officials, and representatives of the development community, local businesses, a local watershed entity, Low Impact Development (LID) experts, design firms and nurseries. The project implemented priorities identified by the intended users that would best develop municipal capacity for GI.

Categories: Planning; Community Capacity

 

Project Title: Climate Adaptation Chapter: Town of Durham

Source of Funds: NHDES Coastal Program

PI: Kyle Pimental, Regional Planner

Award Amount: $3,000

Award Period: July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013

Description: Strafford Regional Planning Commission assisted the Town of Durham in developing a climate adaptation chapter that was adopted as a subset of their Hazard Mitigation Plan. The chapter provides adaptation strategies to protect areas of the town that are at risk of flooding due to climate change and sea level rise, and identifies various regulatory and non-regulatory options that can be considered by Durham from this potential risk. With collaboration from Town officials and staff from the University of New Hampshire, SRPC delivered a product that provided information on how best to plan and act to address the impacts of climate change, thus protecting coastal infrastructure and resources.

Categories: Planning

 

Project Title: Navigating from Concern to Action Using the NOAA Roadmap in New Hampshire’s Small Coastal Communities

Source of Funds: NH Coastal Program

PI: Amanda Stone, Chris Keeley

Award Amount: $15,450

Award Period: July 2012 – June 2013

Description: This project helped a small NH coastal community (Newfields) with a volunteer-board government move climate preparedness from concern to action by using the NOAA Roadmap for Adapting to Coastal Risks (NOAA Roadmap). The Roadmap is a community-driven process that expanded capacity in Newfields to respond to climate preparedness through (1) increased knowledge about vulnerabilities of community assets, and (2) awareness of climate adaptation options. As a result, the community has updated their stormwater management regulations, implemented an emergency generator purchasing and installation program for community members, developed and distributed a local extreme weather preparedness calendar, and more.

Categories: Community Capacity; Regulations; Planning

 

Project Title: Update of the Master Plan Vision Chapter: Town of Newmarket

Source of Funds: NHDES Coastal Program

PI: Kyle Pimental, Regional Planner

Award Amount: $5,500

Award Period: July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013

Description: Strafford Regional Planning Commission (SRPC) assisted the Town of Newmarket in preparing an update of the Town’s Vision Chapter of the Master Plan. The process was prepared collaboratively by SRPC and a designated Master Plan subcommittee. SRPC organized and facilitated two visioning forums to solicit comments and ideas from residents for addressing current issues and challenges pertaining to various aspects of the community, including: housing, recreation, land use, zoning, business and industry, community facilities, infrastructure, and natural and cultural resources. The community was asked to consider the integration of climate adaptation measures into municipal programs, polices, and operations to reduce community risk and vulnerability.

Categories: Planning

 

Project Title: Effects of anthropogenic change on salt marsh microbial structure and function

Source of Funds: National Estuarine Research Reserve System Graduate Research Fellowship

PI: Matt Simon, University of New England

Award Amount: $20,000

Award Period: June 1, 2012 – May 31, 2013

Description: The goal of this project was to expand our understanding of saltmarsh microbial community structure and function and response to impending sea level rise and increasing levels of nutrient pollution. The repercussions of human activities may combine (or counteract each other) to yield unexpected effects of altered microbial activity on saltmarsh resiliency to change. This understanding informs management decisions by: 1) Guiding short-term management decisions on saltmarsh preservation more effectively through improved understanding of ecological responses to stress; and 2) Shaping long-term management goals and activities through a better understanding of environmental changes and adaptation management tools that will build saltmarsh resiliency against change.

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Stimulate innovation and increase the pace of municipal responses to a changing climate in the coastal zone of the Northeast and Bay of Fundy

Source of Funds: NOAA Climate and Societal Interactions Program

PIs: Jennifer Andrews (CA-CP), Susan Farady (RI Sea Grant Legal Program), Wes Shaw (StormSmart Coasts Network)

Award Amount: $285,000

Award Period: September 1, 2011 – April 30, 2013

Description: This project included three components: 1) Research and documentation of the best practice/innovative municipal adaptation approaches in the Northeast; 2) Municipal technical assistance through a small grant program; and 3) Adaptation/resilience communications development in collaboration with CA-CP and partners. http://www.cpo.noaa.gov/cpo

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Coastal Flooding and Erosion Forecast – Hampton, NH

Source of Funds: NOAA through NERACOOS and NextEra Energy through PREP

PI: Ru Morrison (NERACOOS), Bob Beardsley (WHOI), Derek Sowers (PREP), John Cannon (NWS), Steve Couture (NHDES Coastal Program)

Award Amount: $12,000

Award Period: February 2012 – December 2012

Description: An empirical relationship exists between storm tide, waves and coastal flooding or splash-over damage (NWS coastal flood study). Knowing this relationship helps predict when flooding and splash-over events (such as beach erosion) might occur based on forecast water level (tide height) and wave height data. Scientists from the University of Massachusetts at Boston, center for Coastal Environmental Sensing Networks (CESN) installed a state-of-the-art tide gauge at the Hampton Fire and Rescue pier on Hampton Harbor to support the project. The installation of the gag e was funded via a generous donation by NextEra Energy Seabrook Station.   Working with the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine, NERACOOS and modelers in the Northeast region, a working prototype was developed using a water level model (NECOFS/FVCOM) and wave model (Wave Watch3). This prototype was working for Hampton, New Hampshire and Scituate, Massachusetts locations. We hope to expand to other regions depending on need. This product could be used by emergency managers, coastal homeowners and other users with interest and concern about beach erosion from large-wave storms. The capacity for the Coastal Flooding and Erosion Forecast system to predict damage days in advance of storms is extremely important to coastal property owners and emergency responders, resulting in dollars and lives saved.

Project web site:

Sample site – Scituate, MA:

http://www.neracoos.org/datatools/forecast/coastal_flooding_forecast/scituate

Real time tide gage – Hampton Harbor: http://p5.neracoos.org/products/modeldata/popup.html?page=popup&platform=hampton&model_type=NEC

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Portsmouth Coastal Resilience Initiative

Source of Funds: NOAA through the Northeast Regional Ocean Council (NROC)

PI: Peter Britz, Environmental Planner

Award Amount: $20,000 with additional provisional $10,000

Award Period: July 2012 – August 31, 2012, provisional funding through 2013

Description: This project utilized consulting services to supplement City staff hours to provide an inventory, analysis and recommendations that were easily integrated into the Master Plan update process (scheduled to start in July 2012), the building code, and the City’s capital improvement plan. This project also utilized scenario planning to explore uncertainty about the future consequences of climate change on the City (both for the short-term and long-term.) This scenario planning approach sought to avoid adverse impacts on the built environment and natural resources by considering a few potential futures (in this case low, medium, and high risk scenarios). Scenario planning for this project incorporated both quantitative and qualitative information in the decision-making process. This process enabled the City to undertake a focused outreach around climate adaptation, without encumbering the Master Plan process. http://www.planportsmouth.org/cri.html

Categories: Research and Assessment; Planning

 

Project Title: New Flood Plain Maps for Coastal New Hampshire and Questions of Legal Authority, Measures and Consequence

Source of funds: National Sea Grant Law Center (2011-2012) in collaboration with the Vermont Law School

PI: John Echeverria, Peg Elmer & Kat Garvey (Vermont Law School); Julia Peterson (NH Sea Grant); Cameron Wake (UNH)

Award Amount: $25,000

Award Period: March 1, 2011 – February 28, 2012

Description: Questions of Legal Authority, Measures, and Consequences assesses various types of legal risks communities in the Lamprey River Watershed may be concerned about as a result of adopting new flood management regulations and policies. To assess these risks we identified four potential legal challenges related to: (1) municipal liability, (2) enabling authority, (3) the use of climate maps as evidence, and (4) takings. In general, the risk of municipal liability is low, so long as municipalities follow sound planning principles. Not only is the level of risk low, the federal government encourages communities to enact certain types of regulations designed to reduce flood hazards. This encouragement provides states and municipalities an additional layer of assurance with respect to adopting and defending revised or new flood regulations. Under federal floodplain guidelines, states and municipalities are encouraged to establish more stringent regulations above and beyond minimum federal requirements. For example, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) advises communities to enact stricter regulations through a program called the Community Rating System.1 This document, provides a list of additional regulatory and non-regulatory tools communities can use to both help reduce risk of flood hazards and avoid legal quandary. http://100yearfloods.org/resources/pdf/2012_VermontLawSchool_LampreyRiverReport.pdf

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Assessing the Risk of 100-year Freshwater Floods in the Lamprey River Watershed of New Hampshire Resulting from Changes in Climate and Land Use

Source of funds: NOAA – CICEET

PI: Cameron Wake (UNH), Fay Rubin (GRANIT), Steve Miller (GBNERR), Robert Roseen (UNH), Michael Simpson (Antioch University New England), Lisa Townson (UNHCE)

Award Amount: $188,595

Award Period: August 1, 2009 – July 31, 2011

Description: This project developed and refined a methodology for assessing flood risk associated with land use and climate change scenarios, implemented the methodology for the Lamprey River watershed of Great Bay, NH, and demonstrated the use of associated products to support land use decision-making in coastal communities. The core analyses and outputs for this project included maps at the watershed and municipality scale of the 100-year flood risk boundaries and river discharge at specific locations under selected scenarios. As a result, decision-makers and the public within the watershed have access to new information regarding local flood risk, and are educated about how past and potential future land use patterns and climate change will influence the frequency and spatial extent of flooding. http://100yearfloods.org

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Assessment of Climate Change in Coastal New Hampshire

Source of Funds: NH Charitable Foundation

PI: Great Bay Stewards, Steve Miller (GBNERR), Cameron Wake (UNH)

Award Amount: $19,800

Award Period: August 2010 – July 2011

Description: Produced a detailed assessment of climate change for coastal New Hampshire that describes how the region’s climate has changed over the past century, and how climate may change over the course of this century based on different global greenhouse gas emission scenarios. The results were detailed in a report and series of presentations titled “Climate Change in the NH Coastal Watershed: Past, Present, and Future”. Adapting to a changing climate requires both data and information at a spatial and temporal scale that is relevant to decision making. Unfortunately, information provided by existing national and broad regional climate change impact assessments are not sufficiently detailed to provide municipal and regional decision makers with key decision relevant information. This climate assessment provided decision-relevant information on a regional scale to individual, municipal, regional, and state decision-makers. The information compiled in this climate assessment provides the foundation for developing local adaptation plans to a changing climate and this project disseminated this information to seacoast municipalities as well as regional and state organizations. http://CarbonSolutionsNE.org

Categories: Research and Assessment

 

Project Title: Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge Adaptation Analysis via COAST

Source of Funds: EPA Climate Ready Estuaries (CRE)

PI: Sam Merrill (GEI Consultants, Inc.), Derek Sowers (NOAA), Curtis Bohlen (CBEP), Paul Kirshen (UNH), Joseph Cooper

Award Amount: $70,000 (35k for Casco Bay, 35k for PREP)

Award Period: 2011 – 2012

Description: The primary objective of this project was to provide support for climate adaptation planning processes in South Portland, ME and the Hampton/Seabrook estuary in NH. Working in partnership with PREP and CBEP, the New England Environmental Finance Center (EFC) provide visual, numeric, narrative, and presentation-based products based on the COAST decision-support tool. It was anticipated these products can help galvanize support for processes underway and represent specific action items stakeholders can evaluate. At public meetings of local stakeholder groups the EFC provided 1) single-event snapshot visualizations of 3D extruded values for each action and no-action scenario; 2) multi-decade tallies of cumulative expected damages under each adaptation scenario; and 3) interpretation of avoided costs associated with each adaptation action under consideration. Dialogue was solicited about implications for possible subsequent local action.

Categories: Research and Assessment; Community Capacity

 

Other related projects

Project Title: Carbon Disclosure Project

Source of Funds: Membership and Foundation

PI(s): CDP Secretariat

Award Amount: N/A

CAW Involvement: Pax World is an investor signatory to CDP

Award Period: N/A

Description: investor initiatives – backed in 2015 by more than 822 institutional investors representing an excess of US$95 trillion in assets – give investors access to a global source of year-on-year information that supports long-term objective analysis. This includes evidence and insight into companies’ greenhouse gas emissions, water usage and strategies for managing climate change, water and deforestation risks. (Source: https://www.cdp.net/en-US/WhatWeDo/Pages/investors.aspx)

 

Project Title: Investor Network on Climate Risk

Source of Funds: Membership and Foundation

PI(s): Ceres

Award Amount: N/A

CAW Involvement: Pax World is an investor member of INCR

Description:   The Investor Network on Climate Risk (INCR) is a network of more than 110 institutional investors representing more than $13 trillion in assets committed to addressing the risks and seizing the opportunities resulting from climate change and other sustainability challenges INCR’s mission is to mobilize investor leaders to address climate and other key sustainability risks, while building low-carbon investment opportunities. Over the past 10 years, this handful of investors has grown to more than 110 members managing over $13 trillion in total assets. INCR now includes the largest institutional investors in North America as well as leading religious and labor funds, asset managers and socially responsible investment funds.