Dr. Sarah Stafford presented her research at the October 6th CCPO-ICAR seminar. Her seminar was titled “Unpacking Property Owners’ Shoreline Modification Decisions: Evidence from Coastal Virginia.” The PowerPoint slides are available below. You can access the video of Dr. Stafford’s presentation here.

Learn more about the Center for Coastal and Physical Oceanography (CCPO) and Institute for Coastal Adaptation and Resilience (ICAR) Seminar Series: http://www.ccpo.odu.edu/seminar.html



This presentation describes the findings of a recent project that combines data from a survey of shoreline property owners with data on shoreline modification permits to examine whether and how property owners modify their estuarine shorelines. We find that shoreline armoring is very popular among property owners that choose to modify their shoreline. While living shorelines are less common, applications for them are increasing both in absolute numbers and as a percentage of all shoreline modification requests. For property owners, a number of different issues factor into the shoreline modification decision including effectiveness, cost, aesthetics, and property values, but regardless of their choice of shoreline modification, almost all survey respondents believe that their choices have had a neutral or positive impact on erosion and the health of the Chesapeake Bay.  The results of this project provide insights into how coastal managers might affect the choice of shoreline modification and encourage owners to choose living shorelines over shoreline armoring. 



Dr. Stafford is the Chair of the Economics Department and the Chancellor Professor of Economics, Public Policy and Law at the College of William & Mary. Dr. Stafford earned a B.S in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Economics from Johns Hopkins University. She is the author of numerous peer-reviewed publications in economics, public policy and interdisciplinary journals, as well as a number of articles in law reviews. She has received grants from multiple organizations including the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association, and Resources for the Future. Her current research focuses on examining the impacts of sea level rise on individuals, local communities, and government and helping those entities prepare for and adapt to their changing environment. 

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