On April 26, 2017, the Ocean Protection Council (OPC) adopted a resolution acknowledging a recent science report as a foundational piece for updating the State’s Sea-Level Rise Guidance Document and directing staff at the Ocean Protection Council to begin the policy update, which will help state and local agencies incorporate sea-level rise into their decision-making.
“This latest scientific report on sea-level rise off California should be of concern to all Californians,” stated California Natural Resources Secretary John Laird. “It’s not just the possibility of the seas rising a few feet in the next century—it’s what happens when there are extreme storms that magnify the difference. Our ongoing efforts to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions could significantly help safeguard local communities and important infrastructure. However, this report indicates that no matter what, sea levels will rise off California’s coast; it’s just a question of how much. We must lower our greenhouse gas emissions and we must plan and take action with regard to the rising sea level.”
Read the press release on OPC’s adoption of the resolution here.
Adopted at the April 26, 2017 Council meeting: Updating the State of California Sea-level Rise Guidance Document
On Wednesday, April 26, 2017, at 1 PM, the Ocean Protection Council held a public meeting at the Natural Resource Building Auditorium, 1416 Ninth Street in Sacramento.
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A seven-member working group of the Ocean Protection Council Science Advisory Team has provided the State with a report on the best available sea-level rise science — including recent scientific advances on the role of polar ice loss. The report, entitled Rising Seas in California: An Update on Sea-level Rise Science, includes key findings, an analysis of the contributors that affect how much sea levels will rise along California’s coast, as well as new information on the likelihood of sea level changes based on different greenhouse gas emission scenarios.
This report provides the scientific foundation for updating the State’s Sea-level Rise Guidance Document, which was initially released in 2010 and updated in 2013. Now, the Ocean Protection Council is leading a process to update this statewide guidance document, in collaboration with the California Natural Resources Agency, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, the California Energy Commission and the Ocean Science Trust. The guidance document will reflect recent scientific advances and focus on the needs of local governments and state agencies as they incorporate sea-level rise projections into planning, permitting, investment and other decisions.
Public input will be integrated into the final guidance document, which is scheduled for adoption by the California Ocean Protection Council in January 2018. A series of listening sessions to better understand the needs of those who will use the guidance document are occurring on April 17 and 18, 2017. To register, please visit the Updating California’s Sea Level Rise Guidance Document page. A series of public workshops to share the science findings and solicit feedback on how stakeholders will utilize the guidance document will occur in May and June 2017. A draft guidance document will be circulated for formal public comment in the fall of 2017.
The science report is available here.
The press release on the report is available here.
For additional details on the process, please visit the Updating California’s Sea Level Rise Guidance Document page.
The State of California Sea-Level Rise Guidance Document, initially adopted in 2010 and updated in 2013, provides guidance to state agencies for incorporating sea-level rise projections into planning, permitting, investment and other decisions. Now, the California Ocean Protection Council and the California Natural Resources Agency, in collaboration with the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, California Energy Commission, and the California Ocean Science Trust, are updating this statewide guidance to reflect recent advances in ice loss science and projections of sea-level rise. The updated guidance will focus on the needs of state agencies and local governments. It will help cities and counties as they comply with a new law that requires them to incorporate climate change into their planning efforts. The updated guidance document will also assist state agencies prepare for, and adapt to climate change, as directed by Governor Brown’s recent Executive Order.
We will be soliciting feedback on a draft policy guidance framework during four public workshops across the state:
South Coast ⋅ Tuesday, May 16 ⋅ 1 pm – 4 pm
Environmental Learning Center at Hyperion
12000 Vista Del Mar, Playa Del Rey, CA 90293
Bay Area ⋅ Monday, May 22 ⋅ 1:30 pm – 5 pm *
455 Golden Gate Ave, San Francisco, CA 94102
*a Safeguarding California Workshop will take place here earlier in the day at 9:30am – 12:30 pm
North Coast ⋅ Thursday, June 8 ⋅ 9 am – 12 pm
Sequoia Conference Center
901 Myrtle Avenue, Eureka, CA 95501
San Diego ⋅ Monday, June 12 ⋅ 1:30 pm – 5 pm
University of San Diego
Mother Rosalie Hall, Warren Auditorium
5998 Alcala Park
San Diego, CA 92110
For more information, please see Updating the State of California Sea-Level Rise Guidance Document