International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE)

Date of Award

5-2017

Degree Type

Capstone

Degree Name

Dual Degree Master of Business Administration/Master of Science in Environmental Science and Policy (MBA/ESP)

Chief Instructor

Yelena Ogneva-Himmelberger

Second Reader

David Correll

Abstract

The increasing rate and effects of sea level rise is a major environmental concern in the Chesapeake Bay. This paper evaluates the impacts of rising sea level on coastal salt marshes and the surrounding agricultural lands at risk in Dorchester County, Maryland to build off existing environmental monitoring work performed by NOAA’s Sentinel Site Program. The results of the spatial analysis were used to estimate monetary benefits to incentivize farmers to protect these marshes by making their land available for marsh migration to occur. Looking at three scenarios of sea level rise and marsh migration, grain crops (corn, soybeans, and sorghum) are most at risk to potential marsh migration and sea level rise. Areas along the west coast (Taylors Island), the centrally located tributaries, and the coasts of the northwestern tip will be most at risk. The spatial and financial results this analysis will be used in future conservation and climate change resiliency planning.

 
 

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