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GCC Managed Retreat Toolkit Launch (July 15, 2020)

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Communities and states are increasingly considering managed retreat – the voluntary movement and transition of communities and ecosystems away from vulnerable coastal areas – as a strategy for protecting people, infrastructure, buildings, and coastal ecosystems from the impacts of climate change.
To help state and local policymakers who are considering managed retreat , the Georgetown Climate Center (GCC) this week released the Managed Retreat Toolkit. The first comprehensive online legal and policy resource on managed retreat, the toolkit combines legal and policy tools, best and emerging practices, and case studies to support peer learning and decisionmaking around managed retreat and climate adaptation.
During a July 15 launch webinar that drew more than 450 attendees, GCC Senior Associate Katie Spidalieri, the toolkit’s lead author, walked participants through the contents of the toolkit and how it can be used. GCC’s Executive Director Vicki Arroyo and Adaptation Programs Director Lisa Anne Hamilton highlighted the collaborative process involved in developing the toolkit. The webinar also featured Fawn McGee of the New Jersey Blue Acres Program and Liz Williams Russell of the Foundation for Louisiana, who discussed their experiences working with communities to implement retreat strategies. The Blue Acres Program and LA SAFE, which the Foundation for Louisiana helps implement, are both featured in case studies in the Managed Retreat Toolkit.
In all, the toolkit features more than 70 case studies from communities across the US that have begun engaging with managed retreat strategies. With the toolkit, GCC also released Managing the Retreat from Rising Seas, a companion publication that presents 17 case studies in greater depth.
GCC developed the Managed Retreat Toolkit in concert with leading state, local, and federal policymakers, academic leaders, and people from affected communities. Between 2018 and 2020, GCC’s outreach efforts related to the development of the Managed Retreat Toolkit have engaged more than 1,000 people at more than 20 events, a testament to the growing interest in this important topic.
Explore the Managed Retreat Toolkit on the Georgetown Climate Center website!

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