Screen capture from the Adaptation Tool Kit

Adaptation Tool Kit: Sea-Level Rise and Coastal Land Use

This toolkit presents information on 18 different land-use tools (generally used legal devices) that could be used to preemptively respond to threats that sea level rise poses to public and private coastal development and infrastructure.

The Adaptation Tool Kit is designed to help policymakers manage the complexity of adaptation by identifying and organizing adaptation tools. For each tool, the Tool Kit describes the tool, how it can be used to facilitate adaptation, sources that have proposed use of the tool for adaptation purposes, and examples of programs that have implemented the tool. 

The Tool Kit describes each potential adaptation tool by:

  • the type of power exercised to implement it (planning, regulatory, spending, or tax- and market-based tools);
  • the policy objective that it facilitates (protection, accommodation, planned retreat, or preservation); and
  • the type of existing or potential land uses that the tool can be used to adapt (critical infrastructure, existing development, developable lands, and undevelopable lands).

The Tool Kit also offers top-level analysis of the economic, environmental, and social costs and benefits of each tool, and the legal and administrative feasibility of implementing them. The 18 adaptation measures described in the Tool Kit are:

  1. Comprehensive Plans
  2. Zoning and Overlay Zones
  3. Floodplain Regulations
  4. Building Codes and Resilient Design
  5. Setbacks/Buffers
  6. Conditional Development and Exactions
  7. Rebuilding Restrictions
  8. Subdivisions and Cluster Development
  9. Hard-Armoring Permits
  10. Soft-Armoring Permits
  11. Rolling Coastal Management/Rolling Easement Statutes
  12. Capital Improvement Programs
  13. Acquisitions and Buyout Programs
  14. Conservation Easements
  15. Rolling Conservation Easements
  16. Tax and Other Development Incentive
  17. Transferable Development Credits
  18. Real Estate Disclosures
Last modified
8 December 2020 - 2:39pm