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Delaware Estuary Selected For Federal Climate Study


The Delaware Estuary has been selected by EPA as one of six estuaries to be case studies for local action to protect sensitive coastal ecosystems and economies from the potential effects of climate change. This is the first step in EPA’s new “Climate Ready Estuaries” effort to build local ability to adapt to climate change.

“EPA’s Climate Ready Estuaries work will help coastal communities understand and adapt to climate change,” said Assistant Administrator for Water Benjamin H. Grumbles. “Our aim is to build capacity for local decision makers and resource managers to help take pro-active, practical steps for bays at risk.”

The Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, one of 28 National Estuary Programs, will receive technical and financial assistance to assess and reduce vulnerability to climate change. The Partnership will apply analyses and tools to help them make decisions to protect their communities and build knowledge to help other communities adapt to a changing climate. National Estuary Programs and coastal communities with adaptation plans approved by their local stakeholders will be designated as “Climate Ready Estuaries” by EPA.

The Climate Ready Estuaries effort will take the lessons learned from the pilots to provide information and leadership to other coastal communities around the nation. EPA will use the 28 National Estuary Programs, Web-based resources and other means identified through the initial pilots to support local efforts in all of the nation’s coastal communities to plan for and adapt to climate change.

The Climate Ready Estuaries program is one of more than 40 specific actions to respond to the water-related impacts of climate change that are described in a draft strategy developed by EPA’s national water program. The draft strategy is designed to help water resource managers adapt their programs to a changing climate.


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