Resilience in Portland, ME

Portland is highly vulnerable to climate change hazards and has done considerable work to assess its risk of coastal flooding from sea level rise as well as flash flooding from increased rainfall intensity. The current update to the Comprehensive Plan, as well as a local Bayside Adapts Neighborhood Plan, plan for provides an additional opportunity to integrate climate adaptation and sustainability goals into broader planning documents and to engage a larger, more diverse portion of the population. 

The Leadership in Community Resilience project, in coordination with the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Southern Maine, will host a 'Climate Mitigation Workshop and Design Competition.' A series of three workshops will be designed to engage the greater public and design community in Portland with a particular focus on the Bayside Adapts Neighborhood Plan. The outcome of the workshops is to raise awareness on climate change with leading experts from across the county and creatively gather active participation from the public in the form of a design competition.

Threats and Hazards

State of Maine incurs natural hazards such as extreme heat, severe storms and record flooding. Social resilience is limited by the fact that areas most vulnerable to sea-level rise and flooding are rising. According to the National Climate Assessment, sea level increased 1.2 feet over 100 years (1901-2012). "Sea level rise of two feet, without any changes in storms, would more than triple the frequency of dangerous coastal flooding throughout most of the Northeast."