Why is coastal retreat so hard to implement? Understanding the political risk of coastal adaptation pathways

Gibbs, Mark T. (2016) Why is coastal retreat so hard to implement? Understanding the political risk of coastal adaptation pathways. Ocean & Coastal Management, 130, pp. 107-114.

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Abstract

Coastal climate adaptation, as a response to managing the increasing risk of inundation of coastal settlements and infrastructure, is a global challenge. As a result, there is a burgeoning body of studies recommending adaptation options, pathways and strategies generated by the research and increasingly private consulting sector. However, recent reviews of global adaptation performance repeatedly highlight a lack of implementation of many adaptation studies and plans. It is suggested here that one of the reasons why many coastal adaptation plans have not been applied is due to inadequate consideration of the political risk, underpinned by lack of consideration of potential allocation and distributional impacts of adaptation strategies. The work presented here identifies the political risk of the most common coastal adaptation pathways and approaches ('retreat', 'protect' and 'manage'). This work especially highlights the major political risk of pre-emptive planned retreat adaptation strategies, which may seem the most obvious adaptation approach from the perspective of minimising future risks to settlements and infrastructure. However, it carries the largest political risk and potential distributional impacts, which is likely to hinder the adoption of this adaptation strategy in the short term. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd.

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ID Code: 97812
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Climate change adaptation, Coastal adaptation, Political risk, Sea level rise
DOI: 10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2016.06.002
ISSN: 0964-5691
Divisions: Current > Institutes > Institute for Future Environments
Copyright Owner: 2016 Elsevier
Deposited On: 03 Aug 2016 01:53
Last Modified: 03 Aug 2016 21:26

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