Washington Post: Trump's proposed cuts to climate agency would disarm our coasts in the face of rising seas, scientists say

March 10, 2017

The Washington Post interviewed Climate Center Executive Director Vicki Arroyo about the potential impacts on coastal resilience efforts of a White House proposal to slash the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration budget.

The Post reported that the budget targets a handful of programs that provide important resources to help coastal states prepare for the coming effects of climate change. The budget proposal could put coastal communities throughout the nation at a major disadvantage as they struggle to adapt to threats from sea-level rise, severe storms and other climate-related events, scientists and other experts said.

The programs in the crosshairs include NOAA’s Coastal Zone Management grants and Regional Coastal Resilience grants, which come to $75 million combined, according to the document; its $10 million in Coastal Ecosystem Resiliency grants; the National Estuarine Research Reserve System, an annual investment of about $23 million; and its $73 million Sea Grant program.

“Most people live near coastlines in our country and around the world, and need to be able to support their economy - and to try to prevent again the kind of devastation that we saw in Katrina and other storms,” Arroyo told the Post. “Just from a dollars-and-cents perspective, avoiding human suffering, why would you do anything to pull back on support where most people live and where most of the infrastructure is built? That’s not cost effective.”

Read the full story here.