Coastal Smart Growth Home: Getting Started: Assess and Consider Impacts


Locally, the amount of sea level rise measured over time is affected by global sea level rise, subsidence or uplift of the land in the region, and other factors. There are variations in water levels in the Great Lakes region (often lower lake levels). Considering the potential impacts of changing water levels when designing coastal and waterfront infrastructure will promote resilience to a range of possible future scenarios.

How to Get Started

Adaptation Tool Kit: Sea-Level Rise and Coastal Land Use

The Adaptation Tool Kit created by the Georgetown Climate Center explores 18 different regulatory, planning, spending, tax, and other tools that can be used to anticipate vulnerability to sea-level rise. The toolkit also analyzes the advantages and disadvantages associated with employing each tool to aid in decision-making.

Incorporating Sea Level Change Scenarios at the Local Level

NOAA's National Ocean Service released this report to describe eight steps communities can take to create and apply local sea-level change scenarios appropriate for specific geographic areas. These include developing local sea-level change scenarios, understanding uncertainties, considering changes to flooding scenarios, considering potential impacts, and communicating the impacts.

The Dynamic Great Lakes Fact Sheets

This overview of water level change in the Great Lakes includes two linked fact sheets produced by Michigan Sea Grant. "Preparing for Variable Lake Levels" addresses historic changes in the levels of the Great Lakes and factors that influence lake levels, and it encourages taking into account variable lake levels when planning projects along the lakes. "Preparing for Extremes" outlines strategies to plan for changing lake levels and other climate extremes, such as identifying vulnerabilities and increasing resilience.

Coastal Sensitivity to Sea-Level Rise: A Focus on the Mid-Atlantic Region

This report, developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, NOAA, and the U.S. Geological Survey under the auspices of the U.S. Global Change Research Program, discusses the impacts of sea-level rise on coastal communities, habitats, and resources, focusing on the region from New York to North Carolina. In addition to discussing the potential implications of sea-level rise, the report describes options for planning for and adapting to sea-level rise.