CRC Publishes Coasts at Risk Report


CRC has published a comprehensive report that addresses risks that natural hazards pose to the world’s coastal nations and potential environmental solutions.

Coasts at Risk: An Assessment of Coastal Risks and the Role of Environmental Solutions examines coastal nations’ global risks from natural disasters and the effects of environmental degradation and identifies environmental solutions that could reduce those risks.

The report presents in detail the Coasts at Risk Index, which assesses coastal nations’ risk based on the indicators of exposure, susceptibility, vulnerability, and the capacity to cope and adapt. The index rates nations from very low to very high risk based on those indicators.

Coastal development and climate change are rapidly changing the world’s coastlines and dramatically increasing risks of catastrophic damage. Erosion, inundation and extreme weather affect hundreds of millions of people and communities, and environmental degradation compounds these risks. Prior papers and reports have focused on recommendations for either risk reduction or conservation objectives (e.g., early warning systems for risk reduction or protected areas for conservation). This publication takes an integrated approach by focusing on analyses and recommendations to benefit both people and nature and environmental conservation objectives. The recommendations are relevant to policy-makers, scientists, conservationists and risk managers.

Coasts at Risk is a joint publication of CRC, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and United Nations University-Institute for Environment and Human Security and is available here.

RI Governor Signs Climate Change Law

On Friday, Aug. 1, Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee signed into law climate change legislation that the RI House and Senate approved earlier this year. He signed The Resilient Rhode Island Act during a ceremony at the North Kingstown Town Beach in Wickford. Read a news report of the milestone event here.

New Guidebook Helps Coastal Homeowners Protect Their Property

Rhode Island Coastal Property Guide - 2014

CRC partnered with the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC) and Rhode Island Sea Grant to produce a guide for the state’s homeowners and businesses who own coastal property. The guide provides owners with steps they can take to protect their property from storm flooding and shoreline erosion.

“Rhode Island Coastal Property Guide: What Coastal Property Owners, Renters, Builders and Buyers Should Know About Rhode Island’s Shoreline” is available online or can be ordered as a hard-copy booklet (email: The guide includes checklists and information to help readers determine their risks for flooding and erosion and to learn practical ways to protect their property.

“Rising sea level and extreme weather events resulting from global warming will have a significant impact on Rhode Island in the years to come,” said URI Graduate School of Oceanography Dean Bruce Corliss. “The Rhode Island Property Guide will provide timely and valuable information for residents and businesses to address these threats.”

The 30-page guide contains information about the unique circumstances – natural and regulatory – that affect property in the coastal zone. The information is provided in 10 sections and covers a range of areas from setbacks to septic systems.

Rhode Island Sea Grant Director Dennis Nixon said the guide is an example for coastal communities throughout the United States addressing the same challenges. “We’ve brought the best science in to inform this guidance, which is certainly applicable to shoreline communities in many states,” he said.

The guide was produced as part of the Rhode Island Shoreline Change Special Area Management Plan (Beach SAMP), a state effort developing comprehensive and practical regulatory guidance for coastal adaptation to flooding, storm surge, erosion and sea level rise. CRMC, CRC, Sea Grant and the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management’s Bays, Rivers, and Watersheds Coordination Team funded the guide project.

Sustainable Livelihoods Work Featured in USAID Success Story


The accomplishments of CRC’s sustainable livelihoods activities in Tanzania are featured in a success story on the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) website. The livelihoods initiative was one component of the five-year Pwani project, which focused on coastal villages near Saadani National Park and Zanzibar’s Menai Bay Conservation Area and concluded in December.

Pwani partnered with 1,359 households between 2010 and 2013 to reduce biodiversity threats and create sustainable livelihoods. For households in 21 villages, family income rose an average of 43 percent when they began various activities including bread baking, beekeeping, shell-craft jewelry making, solar-powered cell phone chargers and soap making. Read the full article to learn more.

Government Officials Inaugurate Senegal Fish Processing Facility

A new state-of-the-art fish processing facility in Cayar, Senegal, drew a visit from USAID/Senegal MIssion Director Susan Fine and Senegal Minister of Fisheries Haidar El Ali. The upgraded plant is an important component of the USAID/COMFISH project, of which CRC is lead implementer. The inauguration of the facility lead the June issue of USAID/Senegal’s Dateline:Dakar newsletter.