The Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC) along with its partners has been awarded grant funding from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to continue work to make Rhode Island’s shoreline and coastal habitats more resilient in the face of rising seas and increased storm events.
With the awarded funds, the CRMC and project partners Save The Bay, the University of Rhode Island’s Coastal Resources Center and Rhode Island Sea Grant, and Roger Williams University Marine Affairs Institute will identify 10 sites within the boundaries of the CRMC’s R.I. Shoreline Change (Beach) Special Area Management Plan – which covers the state’s 21 coastal communities – that would benefit from shoreline adaptation.
“Rhode Island and the CRMC are leaders in pioneering coastal management methods and the protection of our coastal resources,” said Caitlin Chaffee, CRMC policy analyst and agency project lead. “This project aims to demonstrate that we can protect both its natural features and its communities from the threats of storms, erosion and flooding from rising seas.”
On June 12, 2018, the CRMC adopted the Shoreline Change (Beach) SAMP, a comprehensive policy that provides guidance and tools for state and municipal decision-makers to plan for, adapt to, and recover from coastal storm, erosion, and sea level rise impacts.
In addition to the policy document – which contains a unique coastal permitting process – the SAMP includes a suite of web-based tools (STORMTOOLS) that provides maps of sea level rise and storm surge models, updated shoreline change maps for the entire coast, a Coastal Property Guide for residential and commercial property owners, and an app (MyCoast Rhode Island) for real-time citizen reporting of flood and storm events and impacts.