Climate Risk in the Seacoast (C-RiSe): Assessing Vulnerability of Municipal Assets and Resources to Climate Change
Climate Risk in the Seacoast (C-RiSe): Assessing Vulnerability of Municipal Assets and Resources to Climate Change is a project that will provide Great Bay municipalities with maps and assessments of flood impacts to road and transportation assets, critical facilities and infrastructure, and natural resources associated with projected increases in storm surge, sea level and precipitation. The project will engage the following municipalities in RPC’s region – Newfields, Exeter, Stratham, Greenland and Newington – and the following municipalities in Strafford Regional Planning Commission’s region – Rollinsford, Dover, Madbury, Durham and Newmarket.
The project is comprised of several components described below.
Vulnerability Assessments - A vulnerability assessment that quantifies and maps impacts to transportation systems, critical facilities and infrastructure, and natural resources will be conducted for each municipality in order to provide a broad overview of the potential risk and vulnerability of municipal assets and resources resulting from projected increases in storm surge, sea level and precipitation. Water levels for sea-level rise (SLR) and sea-level rise combined with storm surge (SS) scenarios will be mapped for each municipality. Scenarios evaluated will include 1.7 feet, 4.0 feet and 6.3 feet of sea-level rise and these values on combined with a 100-year storm surge.
Culvert Analysis -Modeling will be developed to assess culvert hydrology, hydraulic capacity, and aquatic organism passage at various flows under projected climatic conditions. Modeling results will enable municipalities to identify and categorize culverts for replacement that have inadequate flow capacity and/or present barriers to passage of aquatic organisms.
Hazard Mitigation Planning - Outreach and technical assistance will be provided to each municipality in order to inform municipal leaders about future flood risks and incorporate vulnerability assessment results and adaptation strategies into local planning efforts. Municipal vulnerability assessment reports will be prepared for potential inclusion in local hazard mitigation plans.
Partner Organizations: New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services Coastal Program, NH GRANIT, Strafford Regional Planning Commission and UNH Stormwater Center.
The C-RiSe project is funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration under the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA) Enhancement Program Projects of Special Merit for FY 2015, authorized under Section 309 of the CZMA (16 U.S.C. § 1456b).
TIDES TO STORMS: Assessing Risk and Vulnerability to Sea-level rise and Storm Surge: A Vulnerability Assessment of Coastal New Hampshire
Portsmouth, New Castle, Rye, North Hampton, Hampton, Hampton Falls and Seabrook
In September 2015 the Rockingham Planning Commission completed the Tides to Storms project to assess the vulnerability of coastal municipalities and public infrastructure to flooding from expected increases in storm surge and rates of sea-level rise. The project’s purpose was to develop a regional scale understanding of what and where impacts from sea-level rise and storm surge will occur on New Hampshire’s coast. The study did not include an assessment of the specific degree of damage nor estimate monetary losses to specific sites or properties.
In addition to the regional vulnerability assessment, an assessment report and map set were prepared for each of the seven coastal municipalities. Municipalities were provided maps and an assessment of risks to roadways and supporting transportation infrastructure, critical facilities and infrastructure, and natural resources. Each report includes recommended actions that municipalities can take to help adapt and improve resiliency to changing conditions caused by storm surge and sea-level rise. The Rockingham Planning Commission gratefully acknowledges the participation of the coastal New Hampshire municipalities and their officials, staff, boards and commissions in the preparation of this project.
Regional Vulnerability Assessment Report and Map Set
Note: Due to their size the regional map set is contains in a zipped folder containing individual map files (PDFs).
This project was funded by New Hampshire Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM) through a Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Additional funding for this project provided by the NH Department of Transportation through Federal Highways Administration.Technical support and data provided by NH GRANIT.
Use and Applicability of the Tides to Storms Reports and Maps:
The purpose of the regional and municipal vulnerability assessment reports is to provide a broad overview of the potential risk and vulnerability of state, municipal and public assets as a result of projected changes in sea-levels and coastal storm surge. This report should be used for preliminary and general planning purposes only, not for parcel level or site specific analyses. The vulnerability assessments performed were limited by several factors including the vertical accuracy of elevation data (derived from LiDAR) and the static analysis applied to map coastal areas subject to future flooding which does not consider wave action and other coastal dynamics. Also, the identification of flood impacts to buildings and infrastructure are based upon the elevations of the land surrounding them, not the elevation of any structure itself. The changes in sea-level used as the basis of the vulnerability assessment are based on a plausible range of sea-level scenarios as depicted in the 2014 National Climate Assessment and New Hampshire Coastal Risks and Hazards Commission Science and Technical Advisory Committee 2014 report, and are not projections or estimates. The assumptions that underlie the sea-level scenarios should be reviewed on a regular basis.