Managed Retreat Toolkit
Collectively, the toolkit is designed to help policymakers:
- Identify and assess a range of legal and policy tools available to facilitate managed retreat in vulnerable coastal areas experiencing sea level rise, flooding, and land loss;
- Implement best and emerging practices by highlighting the most innovative managed retreat practices that are being deployed at the state and local levels around the country; and
- Overcome legal and policy barriers to implementation by providing decision-making frameworks for navigating these barriers and evaluating tradeoffs facing people, communities, and the environment.
The primary audiences for the toolkit are state, territorial, and local policymakers in U.S. coastal jurisdictions.
Despite an emphasis on the coastal sector, some of the management practices and case studies are drawn from riverine or non-coastal states and communities because of the transferable lessons they can provide others. For example, hazard mitigation buyouts in the U.S. have historically and predominantly occurred in inland riverine areas, but coastal decision makers can learn from these buyout programs to avoid “reinventing the wheel.” Many of the tools can also be applied in inland communities at increasing risk of other types of flooding, such as from heavy precipitation events.