State panel recommends ways to deal with rising sea levels

Commission’s goals are to see urgency of climate threats, act quickly

The Hawai’i Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Commission adopted recommendations Tuesday to guide Hawaii’s response to climate change impacts.

The panel’s proposals include:

• Supporting legislation for disclosure of private and public property offerings located in areas potentially exposed to rising sea levels.

• Requesting all new development, redevelopment and modifications be directed away from beach areas.

• Urging counties to incorporate the 3.2-foot sea level rise exposure area into their general and development plans.

• Encouraging agencies and nongovernmental utility providers to identify and prioritize assets within exposed areas, identify adaptation measures and provide a status update to the climate commission.

• Funding state programs to meet mitigation goals and to bring resources to help in planning and implementing measures to counter sea level rise and other climate-related impacts.

The commission is led by state Department of Land and Natural Resources Chairwoman Suzanne Case and Office of State Planning Director Leo Asuncion. The panel includes other officials from state and county agencies.

The group’s mission statement is: “Hawaii’s Climate Commission recognizes the urgency of climate threats and the need to act quickly. It promotes ambitious, climate-neutral, culturally responsive strategies for climate change adaptation and mitigation in a manner that is clean, equitable and resilient.”

The panel’s next meeting is from 1 to 4 p.m. Nov. 27 at the Board of Land and Natural Resources meeting room in Honolulu. The board’s room is in the Kalanimoku Building at 1151 Punchbowl St. in Honolulu.

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