Coastal Adaptation

A white shack it leaning dangerously into water lapping over pavement
The National Park Service protects natural resources, cultural resources, and facilities in over 120 coastal and parks that are vulnerable to changes in sea and lake levels, saltwater intrusion, ocean acidification, inundation during coastal storms, and the impacts of changing temperature and precipitation regimes. These parks compose a network of protected areas that are critical to maintaining threatened coastal resources and values, preserving coastal heritage and providing visitor experiences. The National Park Service must prepare for and adapt to coastal climate change impacts in order to protect irreplaceable resources where possible, and to connect visitors to the resources and the potential impacts of climate change.

The NPS is working with scientists and other partners to support scientific research, inventory, and monitoring activities to gather data and improve understanding of climate and weather phenomena affecting coastal parks. As part of a Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge Projections for the National Park Service project, you can explore sea level rise scenarios for parks with our NPS Sea Level Rise viewer or storm surge maps for each site included in the study. We are conducting Coastal Facilities Vulnerability Assessments to identify projected impacts of climate and other stressors on park resources and operations. Prior to those, we looked at assets exposed to 1 meter of sea level rise for 40 coastal parks. We’ve developed guidance and tools to help NPS managers understand vulnerability and take actions that will increase sustainability, including actions that are compatible with the dynamic coastal environment.

Last updated: August 31, 2021

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