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Climate change and sea level rise is increasingly on the agenda of the public, the media, and decision makers in the public, private and social sectors of society. Focus is almost solely on the hazards and the potential disasters we might be facing. MARI at Old Dominion University is focusing on the solutions, the options we have to mitigate the impacts of climate change and sea level rise, and to adapt to the changes.

To develop the paractice-relevant solutions, MARI engages in research that produces the practice-relevant knowledge needed to cope with the impacts of climate change and sea level rise on the coastal zone and the urban coast in particular. In doing so, MARI responds to the knowledge needs of a wide range of community stakeholders, including government, military, private sector, and citizens. The high rate of local sea level rise, the exposure to extreme weather events, and the complex socio-economic structure makes Hampton Roads a natural laboratory for climate change and sea level rise. MARI utilizes this laboratory and works with stakeholders within and outside the region to generate the knowledge that can enable them not only to reduce the negative impacts but also to utilize the opportunities in the changes to come. To ensure that the stakeholders get the knowledge they can apply, MARI works closely with them to ensure a co-creation of practice-relevant knowledge and to support them in the use of this knowledge.


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Read more about the Hampton Roads Pilot Projects that is currently developed ...

Getting the Picture: A Climate Education Resource ...


  • Follow-up to 3RC: A follow-up event on the recent “Resilient Region Reality Check” that took place on March 17, 2015 at ODU is now in planning by the Urban Land Institute for June 9, 2015.

  • Hampton Roads Flooding/Sea Level Rise Adaptation Forum: The next forum is scheduled for May 22 from 8:30 am- 3 pm at the VMASC Center 1030 University Blvd. Suffolk, VA 23435. Lunch and morning coffee and snacks will be provided. The topic for the quarterly meeting is “Megaproject Protective Structures for Hampton Roads. For more information and a link to the registration, see here.

  • Preparing for the Journey to the Post-Holocene: At the meeting of the Explorer Club in Washington D.C. on Saturday, May 16, 2015, Hans-Peter Plag will show that humanity is on a journey to the Post-Holocene and discuss steps to prepare for this journey into the unknown. The presentation will be at the Cosmo Club in D.C. at 7:30 PM.


  • Resilient Region Reality Check (3RC): March 17, 2015. Old Dominion University and the Urban Land Institute (ULI Hampton Roads) in cooperation with a number of organizations in the region jointly organized a Resilient Region Reality Check focusing on perceptions of climate change and sea level rise in Hampton Roads. See for more information.

  • GEOSS Science and Technology Stakeholder Workshops: March 22-26, 2015 in Norfolk, VA. MARI supported the organization of two high-level workshops organized by the GEOSS Science and Technology Stakeholder Network of the Group on Earth Observations (GEO). The first workshop addressed “NAVIGATING SUSTAINABILITY ON A CHANGING PLANET” and the second Workshop focused on “CONCEPTS, TECHNOLOGIES, SYSTEMS AND USERS OF THE NEXT GEOSS.” For more information, see 3rd Workshop announcement and 4th Workshop announcement.

  • For more past events, see here ...


[May 9, 2015] Humanity's war against fish: In an opinion piece in the New York Times, PAUL GREENBERG and BORIS WORM comment on the war against fish that was probelled by the end of WW2 and the technology and expertise developed during the war. They state: “Taken collectively, the rise of postwar fishing technology meant that the global reported catch rose from some 15 million metric tons at war&srsquo;s end to 85 million metric tons today — the equivalent, in weight, of the entire human population at the turn of the 20th century, removed from the sea each and every year.” Read the article ...

[May 6, 2015] Carbon dioxide crossed the 400 ppm boundary for good: March 2015 was the first month since several million years ago with an average global atmospheric carbon dioxide level above 400 ppm. This is far outside the pre-1900 range of variability determined from 800,000 years of paleo data. This normal range, which covers warm periods and ice ages, is between 170 and 300 ppm. With the current level, humanity has committed to a large increase in global temperature and a huge sea level rise. Read the article by Nick Visser ...

[April 16, 2015] The Story of Virginia's Rising Seas and Sinking Cities: ODU's student newspaper Mace and Crown described the story of sea level rise and its impact on coastal cities in Virginia and finds that these cities are at high risk. Read the article by Jugal Patel ...

[April 3, 2015] Abrupt climate change impacts are happening: The rapid decrease of Arctic sea ice particularly in the summer months is one of the abrupt climate change impacts already taking place. It also is an impact with positive feedback expected to accelerate more over the near future. See impressive graphics created by Kennedy Elliott and read the article by Chris Mooney ...

[April 2, 2015] The inequity of global warming: Most of the anthropogenic carbon emmission originates on the northern hemisphere (see the graphics by Kennedy Elliott), where 90% of the global population lives, but the countries on the southern hemisphere are impacted by global warming. However, those ecountries that are responsible for most of the carbon emission are content with a target limit for global warming climate change of 2.0oC while those countries contributing much less request a target limit of 1.5oC. Thus, the inequity is not only in causing global warming and suffering from it, but also in the willingness to make efforts to limit is. Read the article by Chris Mooney ...