GO Virginia has awarded Old Dominion University's Emily Steinhilber, Carol Considine and Mujde Erten-Unal a $500,000 grant to develop the Coastal Virginia Consortium, a multi-stakeholder collaboration designed to engage and educate businesses about coastal flooding risks related to sea-level rise and the associated economic impacts.
"In the area of climate resilience, ODU plays a role as, not only the nonpartisan broker of expertise, but also as a member of the community," said Steinhilber, ODU's assistant director of coastal resilience research. "We all live and work here, as do all of our students when they are on campus. We have a real vested interest in making this work for the community."
"We are really the lynchpin in this resilience ecosystem."
The Coastal Resilience and Adaption Economy initiative aims to advance Virginia's coastal communities' capacity to adapt to climate change while creating jobs, bolstering local economies and positioning Virginia as a global leader.
"ODU is pleased to partner with Virginia Sea Grant and RISE on this GO Virginia grant, which builds upon recommendations from the Intergovernmental Pilot Project and the Commonwealth Center for Recurrent Flooding," said Morris Foster, vice president of research. "ODU's Institute for Coastal Adaptation and Resilience Resiliency is a natural convener for this resilience business consortium, which will strengthen and grow existing resilience and innovation ecosystems positioning coastal Virginia as a national leader in this field."
Considine, assistant dean of the Batten College of Engineering and Technology, said the consortium will build on past collaborations among the Office of Research, Batten College of Engineering and Technology and Hampton University. Past projects have included the Coastal Community Design Collaborative and the Virginia Sea Grant, Old Dominion University and Hampton Roads Inter-governmental Pilot Project, which ran from 2014 to 2016.
Steinhilber, Considine and Erten-Unal, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, will use the two-year grant to provide educational workshops for coastal Virginia businesses on flooding risks, regional economic impacts and business continuity planning, to engage industry for development of specific solutions and actionable strategies related to the economic sector that will build resilience in coastal Virginia, and to create a resource web portal.Read more >