Two Western Shore Chesapeake Bay Towns Join Forces to Fight the Effects of Climate Change 

Local Spotlight 

by Kristen E. Humphrey, MLA, Local Assistance and Training Planner 

Due to the growing effects of climate change, many coastal areas around the country and world are facing problems exacerbated by sea level rise and intensified weather patterns. These include larger and more severe storms, and high tides which cause our cities, towns, as well as agricultural, forested, and natural areas to flood more frequently. 

Figure 1 – photo courtesy of Town of North Beach.

Some of the anticipated consequences affecting coastal areas include property damage, surface and groundwater resource contamination, and the negative impacts on recreational opportunities and wildlife habitats.  With roughly 3,190 miles of shoreline1, Maryland is no exception. “For coastal Maryland towns, the future means dealing aggressively with flood risks,” says Lauren Kabler, North Beach Town Council Member.

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SHA Climate Tool Warns of Coastal Flooding

Resources and Tools

Will some coastal towns be underwater in 2050? What can be done to rescue roads, towns, and homes from coastal and river flooding?

The Maryland Department of Transportation State highway Administration (MDOT SHA) has a powerful application to help public planners and private citizens. The MDOT SHA Climate Change Vulnerability Viewer (CCVV) is a user-friendly tool to explore areas and assets vulnerable to the risk of sea-level rise, roadway inundation, and nuisance flooding. The sophisticated web app layers climate and asset management data geospatially to show how extreme weather associated with climate change may change the Maryland coastline. Read more… 

Now for Something Completely Different…or How About Some Good News?

Planning Assistance in Action

By Kristen E. Humphrey, MLA, Infrastructure and Development Planner
and Angelo Bianca, Deputy Director of Air and Radiation Management Administration, Maryland Department of the Environment

We hear so much these days about humanity’s negative environmental impact, from our contribution to climate change, the dumping of plastic in oceans, and the reduction of species diversity across the globe, ushering many into extinction through the deforestation of jungles and the poaching of exotic animals for trophies. Some also fear the uncertainty around federal environmental regulations may threaten to send us backward in our domestic and global efforts to keep the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the land we cultivate safe from contamination. Continue reading