Coastal Flooding & Solutions, Workshop Case Studies

Communicating the Socio-Economic Impacts of Storm Surge Flood Plains under the Coastal Dynamics of Sea-Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

Location: Coastal counties of Northern Gulf of Mexico: Hancock, Harrison, Jackson MS; Mobile and Baldwin, AL; Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Bay, Gulf, Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson, Taylor, FL.

Submitted By: Diana C. Del Angel - Texas A&M-University Corpus Christi, Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies

Project URLs:

Project Description

The use of sea-level rise (SLR) impact scenarios is essential for assessing risk and developing mitigation options. One of the challenges in adaptation planning is the availability of data to inform the understanding and development of options. This work used FEMA’s HAZUS to assessed the socio-economic impact of a 1% and 0.2% probability stillwater flood plain under present and future conditions. The overall transdisciplinary research effort spans a decade and involves stakeholders, including local and state community planners and natural resource managers from the study region, in collaboration with the Northern Gulf of Mexico Sentinel Site Cooperative. Stakeholders were engaged through webinars, workshops and focus groups. Challenges in producing socio-economic data result from the scale at which data is being aggregated — balancing between efficiency in data processing and modeling and visualization across the region while maintaining a useful product at the local level. This process and the resulting data lead to more effective tools for natural resource and hazard managers as it improves stakeholder familiarity with the data and refines the data product. This presentation will cover the research team background, details about the stakeholder engagement process, a summary of methods and data, upcoming data productions and solutions, and the challenges associated with modeling socio-economic impacts of climate change at the coastal land-margin.

Key Successes

a. Understanding the nonlinearity of socio-economic impact of storm surge under SLR. b. Understanding of highly vulnerable areas now, and under SLR. c. Developing easy to use visual tools and communication products


a. Data availability b. Meeting diverse stakeholder data needs c. Producing products that are feasible to model and usable at various spatial scales

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