$0.00 – $6.00
Seven-person, multi-issue facilitated negotiation among local government, community, business, and environmental representatives trying to reach agreement on a strategy for managing climate change risks in a small, beachfront community.
Coastal Flooding and Climate-Related Risks in Launton is a seven-person, multi-issue facilitated negotiation among local government, community, business, and environmental representatives trying to reach agreement on a strategy for managing climate change risks in a small, beachfront community.
The game focuses on managing increased risk of coastal flooding and storm damage through construction of flood protection infrastructure, imposition of flood-proofing requirements, and land use planning. It is one of four exercises developed as part of the New England Climate Adaptation Project.* The Launton game highlights possible solutions for protecting future and existing commercial and residential development, and provides detailed tables and descriptive figures that explain the economic, political, social, and environmental impacts of each option.
The small coastal town of Launton has experienced increasingly intense storms over the past decade, resulting in significant damage to homes, businesses, beaches, and other coastal assets. Climate projections indicate that sea level rise and increasingly extreme storms in the future will lead to even worse coastal flooding and storm-related damage. This is particularly worrisome given that Launton relies heavily on coastal properties and amenities for it tax base and tourism-based economy. To address the increasing risk, town officials have decided to incorporate climate change adaptation into Launton’s Comprehensive Plan update scheduled for next year. The Town Manager has convened a task force to consider climate change projections and recommend ways of reducing the risk of coastal flooding and storm damage to existing and future development. The task force’s recommendations are likely to be incorporated into Launton’s Master Plan update.
- Climate change adaptation poses difficult planning choices, but there are actions cities and towns can take now to protect themselves that will be beneficial regardless of how severe climate change risks turn out to be.
- Development, conservation, and infrastructure investments decisions made today will continue to affect communities far into the future. Short-term actions that do not take long-term climate change risks into account could prove extremely costly in the long run.
- A community-wide approach to managing the collective risks associated with climate change can create opportunities to address other issues while reducing vulnerability and enhancing community resilience.
- Communities must assess their vulnerabilities and decide which adaptation strategies are most appropriate.
- Stakeholders may have conflicting interests that shape their views about which public policy choices make the most sense. By working collaboratively and taking science into account, communities can find creative solutions that meet the interests of diverse stakeholders.
- At-risk towns and cities will have to consider how the financial responsibility for reducing climate risks will be distributed and whose responsibility it is to implement adaptation measures.
This exercise requires seven roles: six stakeholders and one facilitator. Multiple groups of seven can play at the same time. Where there are uneven multiples of seven, players may be doubled up in certain roles.
Total time requirement: 2 – 3 hrs
Preparation: 30 minutes
Negotiation: 60 – 75 minutes
Debriefing: minimum of 30 minutes, during which players can reflect on the game experience and how it relates to real life situations
For all parties:
- General instructions, including a climate change risks assessment memo and floodplain map
- Confidential instructions for:
- Town Manager
- Town Council Representative
- Emergency Management Director
- Executive Director of the Great Coast Regional Land Trust
- Executive Director of the Launton Chamber of Commerce
- Chairperson of the Brewer’s Cove Neighbors Association
- All of the above
- Teaching Notes
* The other three exercises developed as part of the New England Climate Adaptation Project include:
Coastal Flooding in Shoreham: Responding to Climate Change Risks
Flooding and Climate Change Risks in Northam
Flooding in Milton: Collectively Managing Climate Change Risks
Coastal Flooding and Climate-Related Risks in Launton Attributes
|Time required:||2-3 hours|
|Number of participants:||7|
|Neutral third party present:||Yes|
|Teaching notes available:||Yes|
|Author:||New England Climate Change Adaptation Project|