A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration office has awarded the University of Hawaii $845,160 in grant funding to help Hawaii communities reduce their vulnerability to natural hazards and climate change.
Hawaii is particularly vulnerable to coastal hazards. Since the state is heavily reliant on tourism, and most of the development and infrastructure in Hawaii are concentrated on or near the coast, it is highly susceptible to flooding, coastal erosion, sea-level rise and coastal disasters.
The project, titled “Building Resilience to Coastal Hazards and Climate Change in Hawaii,” aims to address these critical issues and increase Hawaii’s resilience to coastal hazards and the impacts from climate change.
“The past year has been a stark reminder of Hawaii’s vulnerability to coastal hazards after a record-setting hurricane season, and massive El-Niño fueled winter surf caused damage to our coastal communities,” said Bradley Romine, Hawaiʻi Sea Grant’s coastal management specialist and the project lead.
“The frequency and severity of coastal erosion and flooding events is only going to increase in the coming decades with climate change and sea-level rise. Improving coastal community resilience makes sense for now and the future.”
In addition, the project will leverage and inform ongoing planning efforts already underway throughout the state, including the development of a statewide Sea Level Rise Vulnerability and Adaptation Report under the Hawaii Climate Adaptation Initiative.