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Upcoming Event in NC – Sea Level Rise and Security in the Southeast: Implications for the Military and Coastal Communities


Flash flooding because of rainfall is just the first phase. Once the rain gets back to the rivers, heading back to the Atlantic, there is another set of flooding.” Major General Greg Lusk, Adjutant General of the North Carolina National Guard

I do think that the climate is changing, and I do think that it is becoming more severe…I do think that storms are becoming bigger, larger, more violent.” General Joseph Lengyel, Chief of the National Guard Bureau

The Center for Climate and Security’s Military Expert Panel, including senior retired flag and general officers from each of the Armed Services, recently issued the 2ndedition of a report concluding that sea level rise risks to coastal military installations will present serious risks to the military mission, underscoring a ‘Responsibility to Prepare.’ The report includes new information regarding military installation vulnerabilities, including to the energy and transportation infrastructure that these installations depend on, showing significant risks to high-value military sites – in North Carolina and across the country (see our recent post highlighting Hurricane Florence’s impact on military infrastructure and surrounding civilian communities, as well as U.S. military, National Guard and Coast Guard operations in the state). The report asserts that policies for addressing climate change risks must go beyond military infrastructure resilience, to include the resilience of surrounding civilian infrastructure, as well as the resilience of military operations in the face of these rapid changes.

In this context, please join the Center for Climate and Security, in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, North Carolina Sea Grant, and the Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuary Partnership, for a discussion about these significant risks, and the opportunities in North Carolina for addressing them. The event will kick-off with a screening of Tidewater, an award-winning film from the American Resilience Project, that details the challenges sea level rise presents to military readiness, national security, and coastal communities in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia – lessons that are certainly relevant to North Carolina.

The event will take place Monday, September 24 in Raleigh North Carolina at 2pm at the NCSU Hunt Library, 1070 Partners Way, Raleigh, NC 27606.

The event is free, but registration is required. To register, visit

The event will also be live-streamed here (please note, page will go live September 24).

Panel Members:

  • Dr. Susan Cohen, Coordinator, Defense Coastal Estuarine Research Program, Department of the Navy
  • Dr. Reide Corbett, Dean, Integrated Coastal Programs, Director, Coastal Studies Institute, Professor, Department of Coastal Studies, East Carolina University
  • Rear Admiral Ann C. Phillips, USN (Ret.), The Center for Climate and Security, Former Commander of Expeditionary Strike Group TWO and Director of Surface Warfare
  • Dr. Gavin Smith, Director of the Department of Homeland Security’s Coastal Resilience Center of Excellence and Research Professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Rear Admiral David W. Titley, USN (Ret.), The Center for Climate and Security, Director of the Center for Solutions to Weather and Climate Risk at Penn State University, former Oceanographer and Navigator of the Navy
  • Holly White, AICP, CFM, Principal Planner, Town of Nags Head


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