Improving Coastal Resilience in the Northeast

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The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) invites you to a briefing on initiatives and partnerships that are helping protect Northeast shorelines and communities from extreme weather events and other coastal hazards. The briefing will showcase nature-based solutions that support coastal resilience for wilderness areas, small communities, and large cities such as New York City. Nature-based solutions can protect human lives and property while creating habitat for wildlife and providing co-benefits like water filtration. These techniques can also be paired with traditional “gray” infrastructure to meet a greater variety of planning needs.

Much coastal restoration work involves multiple agencies at the local, state, and federal level, often working in conjunction with nonprofits and businesses across state and district lines. The panelists will describe this collaborative process and how buy-in for nature-based resilience projects can be achieved across diverse and sometimes competing interests. Speakers for the briefing are:

• Kate Boicourt, Director of Resilience, Waterfront Alliance
Ms. Boicourt will discuss the Alliance’s collaborative work with over 400 business, government, and civic partners to build consensus around resilience plans within the New York Metropolitan area.

• Sara Burns, Water Resource Scientist, The Nature Conservancy (TNC)
Ms. Burns will discuss the Massachusetts Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program, which helps communities develop action-oriented resiliency plans and provides grants to implement those plans.

• Alex Abbott, GIS Analyst, Cartographer and Fish Passage Specialist, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Mr. Abbott will discuss the importance of base-level data collection to inform adaptation planning. The Gulf of Maine currently has the most comprehensive stream and river database of its kind, which has been crucial for resilience and hazard-mitigation work for partners throughout the state’s watersheds.

The Northeast faces a diverse set of coastal challenges, including coastal erosion, threats from storms such as Hurricane Sandy, and heavy property development. However, inventive collaborative projects developed in the Northeast can prove a model for other regions experiencing similar issues.

The briefing will provide specific project examples to protect both homes and industry and the legislation and policies developed at the federal level to help those projects succeed, along with suggestions for further Congressional opportunities to support long-term sustainability of the country’s coastal infrastructure.

This event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Amber Todoroff at or (202) 662-1885.


Room 1539 Longworth House Office Building
15 Independence Ave SE
WASHINGTON District of Columbia 20515

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