Sea-level Rise Adaptation Workshop at Scripps Oceanography - May 2014


UC San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography, the Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands, and The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation hosted a workshop on sea-level rise adaptation May 7-8, 2014, at Scripps Oceanography in La Jolla, California. 

Coastal communities, businesses, and resource managers are already confronted with sea-level rise issues that require action. Sea-level rise is occurring and will complicate existing erosion and salt water intrusion planning and pose a new suite of longer-term decision-making challenges. Along with interested collaborators, UC San Diego is exploring the value, structure, and focus of a new initiative for research and adaption to sea-level rise that may include a range of activities across science, engineering, social science, and policy. A range of collaborations and allied programs important to this effort are being explored.

The May workshop at Scripps Oceanography engaged experts to develop conceptual plans for an initiative to assist in the development of place-based, sea-level rise adaptation strategies. 

Representatives from California, the mid-Atlantic, Florida, and the Netherlands shared specific, regional experiences with planning for sea-level rise, along with challenges and future needs. Highlights included how the natural and social sciences as well as engineering can be of greater service to different regions and sectors in light of their experiences. Additionally, the workshop focused on the strategies and structures necessary to facilitate research integration for sea-level rise response plans at different scales to identify, improve, and integrate approaches across disciplines. 

The workshop included panels of experts on research, modeling, observations, engineering, social science, policy, and education.

Participant and presentation highlights:

Kit Batten is USAID Global Climate Change Coordinator. In this capacity, she coordinates all climate change activities across all bureaus in the agency.  Prior to her appointment at USAID Batten was senior science and policy fellow and program director at the Heinz Center’s Institute for Science Communication and Policy Development. In this role, she taught scientists from academia, government, and NGOs how to communicate about the results of their research with policy makers and the media.  She previously served as the science advisor to the Deputy Secretary of the Interior where she focused her efforts on the communication of climate change science, adaptation strategies for cultural and natural resources, and mitigation strategies, including helping lead the creation of Interior's Climate Science Centers and Landscape Conservation Cooperatives. Prior to her appointment at the Department of the Interior, Batten was a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress where she directed the energy and climate change policy team. She has also served in the offices of Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) as legislative assistant and Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) as an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) fellow. As a postdoctoral associate, she worked for the National Ecological Observatory Network at the American Institute of Biological Sciences. Batten has strong working relationships with members of Congress, White House offices, federal agencies, NGOs, universities, and other stakeholders. She has frequently participated in television, radio and print media communication about science, climate change policy and energy policy. She received a B.A. in chemistry from Oberlin College and a M.S. and Ph.D. in ecology from the University of California, Davis. View workshop PowerPoint.

• Margaret Davidson is acting director of the National Ocean Service (NOS) Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management. She has been an active participant in coastal resource management issues since 1978, when she earned her juris doctorate in natural resources law from Louisiana State University. She later earned a master’s degree in marine policy and resource economics from the University of Rhode Island.  She served as special counsel and assistant attorney general for the Louisiana Department of Justice and was the executive director of the South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium. She joined NOAA as the director of the NOAA Coastal Services Center in 1995. She also served as the acting assistant administrator for NOAA’s National Ocean Service from 2000 to 2002. She holds a faculty appointment at the University of Charleston and serves on the adjunct faculties of Clemson University and the University of South Carolina.  Davidson has served on numerous local, state, and federal committees and has provided leadership for national professional societies. She has focused her professional work on environmentally sustainable aquaculture, mitigation of coastal hazards, and impacts of climate variability on coastal resources. In April 2012, Davidson was appointed acting director of the NOS Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management (OCRM). View workshop PowerPoint.

Falk Feddersen is a professor in the Integrative Oceanography Division at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego. He received his Ph.D. from Scripps Oceanography in 1999, followed by a position as a postdoctoral scholar for two years at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Prior to being appointed as an acting professor at Scripps, he held positions as associate and assistant research oceanographer. He studies various aspects of coastal and near-shore oceanography that span waves, currents, turbulence, sediment transport, and biological processes. His research includes instrument development, observations, theory, and modeling. His extensive field work experience, including projects in La Jolla, Huntington Beach, and Imperial Beach, in California, and in Duck and New River Inlet, in North Carolina, has resulted in new insights on how near-shore processes unfold, findings that are vital for understanding how pollution moves across the coastline. His work has been supported by NSF, ONR, NOAA, and other agencies. View workshop PowerPoint. Watch Feddersen's video about the future of our beaches. Read more about Feddersen's research on our changing oceans.

Captain Tim Gallaudet, Ph.D., USN, assumed duty as the 53rd Superintendent, U.S. Naval Observatory in 2011. He graduated with distinction from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1989, receiving a bachelor’s degree in oceanography. He received a master’s in oceanography from Scripps Institution of Oceanography in 1991. He has conducted hydrographic surveys in the Arabian Sea and Arabian Gulf and served as Forecast and Command Duty Officer at the Naval European Meteorology and Oceanography Center, Rota, Spain, where he also served temporary duty assignments as the Assistant Sixth Fleet Oceanographer onboard USS LASALLE, and as Officer in Charge, Naval European Meteorology and Oceanography Detachment, Souda Bay, Greece.  After receiving a Ph.D. in oceanography from Scripps Oceanography in 2001, he reported onboard USS KITTY HAWK (CV-63), which supported Operations Enduring Freedom in 2001 and Iraqi Freedom in 2003, for which he was awarded the 2003 COMNAVAIRFOR Leadership Award.  In 2003, he reported to the staff of the Commander, Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command in Stennis Space Center, Mississippi, and served as the Emerging Systems Officer.  Between 2004 and 2005, he served as the Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Program Manager at the Naval Oceanographic Office, completing a deployment onboard USNS BOWDITCH in support of Theater ASW Exercise (TASWEX) 2004.  In 2005, he reported as the plank owner Commanding Officer of the Naval Oceanography Special Warfare Center, San Diego, where he was assigned additional duty on the staff of the Commander, Naval Special Warfare Command as the first Technical Special Reconnaissance (TSR) Officer in 2006. He was assigned to the Chief of Naval Operations staff in 2009 under the Oceanographer of the Navy where he served as the Deputy Navigator of the Navy and the Deputy Director of the Navy's Task Force Climate Change. View workshop PowerPoint.

Cat Kuhlman was appointed by Governor Brown in 2012 to serve as deputy secretary for Oceans and Coastal Matters at the California Natural Resources Agency and executive director of the Ocean Protection Council.  Previously she was the executive director for the North Coast Water Quality Control Board, which is responsible for protecting and restoring water quality on the North Coast, including the coastline and major rivers from the Russian to the Smith. She previously worked for the U.S. EPA managing diverse environmental problems along the U.S. Mexico border as well as a wide variety of federal water programs including the Clean Water, Safe Drinking Water Act and Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act. A water enthusiast, She has written papers on international environmental issues and water quality standards.  View workshop PowerPoint.

Skyli McAfee leads the California Ocean Science Trust (OST), an organization dedicated to supporting California’s ocean and coastal management with robust, transparent, and independent science. A true ‘boundary organization,’ OST is funded by state, federal, and private sources, and is accountable to both the State and scientific community. In her capacity as executive director of OST, McAfee serves also as the Science Advisor to the Ocean Protection Council and co-chairs the OPC Science Advisory Team. McAfee serves on many boards and advisory committees, and was recently appointed to the Fish and Wildlife Strategic Vision Blue Ribbon Citizen Commission. Before joining OST, McAfee served as Assistant Director at UC Davis’ Bodega Marine Laboratory where she oversaw complex operations in support of marine science, built durable partnerships with state and federal entities and helped to strategically position BML as a leader in marine climate change research. Ms. McAfee received her undergraduate degree from University of California, Santa Barbara in Aquatic Biology and a Master's degree from Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, where she studied the community ecology of reef fishes in the San Blas Archipelago, Panama.  View workshop PowerPoint.

• S. Bradley Moran is acting director of the National Ocean Council and Assistant Director for Ocean Sciences in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. In this capacity, he focuses on implementing federal ocean science policy and facilitating interagency efforts and partnerships on a broad range of ocean policy, resource, economic, and national security matters. He also serves as co-chair of the National Science and Technology Council Subcommittee on Ocean Science and Technology and deputy director for Ocean Science and Technology on the National Ocean Council.  He most recently served as program director in the Chemical Oceanography Program at the National Science Foundation, co-director and co-principal investigator of the Rhode Island NSF Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, and Assistant Vice President for Research at the University of Rhode Island. He is currently on leave as professor of oceanography at the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography. Moran received a B.Sc. in Chemistry from Concordia University, a Ph.D. in Oceanography from Dalhousie University, and conducted his postdoctoral research at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. View workshop PowerPoint.

Eileen Shea is NOAA’s Pacific Islands Regional Coordinator.  In this capacity, she is responsible for supporting agency-wide programs and projects designed to both respond to regional information needs and support NOAA and national priorities in the Pacific Islands region by bringing together the unique assets and special capabilities of individual NOAA organizations and external partners. She is one of eight NOAA regional coordinators whose combined areas of responsibility cover the continental United States, Alaska, the Caribbean, and Pacific Island jurisdictions. Since the late 1990s, she has been involved in a number of Pacific Island regional endeavors in the field of environmental science and services including leading regional efforts to implement the Pacific Climate Information System (PaCIS) and serving as a member of the Navigators Council (and first Chair) of the Pacific Risk Management ‘Ohana (PRiMO), a collaborative involving a number of federal government and state agencies, universities, and private sector partners engaged in disaster preparedness activities in the Pacific. Prior to accepting her current position in 2007, Shea was senior advisor  to the director of the NOAA National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) and chief, Climate Services and Monitoring Division of the NCDC. In that capacity, she was responsible for NCDC’s programs in data access; data integration and visualization; user engagement, education and outreach; and international, national and regional climate services partnerships. She also served as part of a core team responsible for developing plans for a NOAA Climate Service focusing on service development and delivery and the emergence of an effective of regional climate products and services. She has also served as co-lead for the Integrated Services Development and Delivery objective of the NOAA Climate Goal. View workshop PowerPoint.

Learn more about the sea-level rise workshop collaborators:
The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands
The Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation
Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego

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