City urged to consider environmental changes in future planning

On Tuesday, the Arcata City Council and the Arcata Planning Commission met jointly to hear about the risks sea level rise will bring to the city, and by extension the rest of Humboldt Bay.
The appointed and elected bodies heard from local, state and federal sea level rise experts on how Humboldt Bay is expected to see three feet of sea level rise in the next 40 years, which will likely overrun the dikes and flood areas with key infrastructure such as U.S. Highway 101 and the city’s sewer treatment plant.
“We really need to avoid putting any new things at risk in those areas. This was said before — sea level rise is not going to stop anytime soon,” Aldaron Laird, senior environmental planner at Greenway Partners, said. “It’s going to keep on going until we think we need to reduce what’s at risk and not put more development in areas that are vulnerable.”

Laird urged the council and commission to partner with other agencies, as Arcata will be limited in its ability to singlehandedly adapt to sea level rise.
The full study session can be viewed at
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