The public interest in SLR inspired the Humboldt County Civil Grand Jury to investigate why SLR is happening, how damaging its effects will be, and what must be done to adapt to it.
In September 2022, the conclusion of a study conducted by the County’s Planning Department is expected to recommend the collaborative approach that should be pursued to address SLR around Humboldt Bay. It may be as simple as an informal working group or as formal as a newly created regional agency. Whatever recommendation is forthcoming, the Grand Jury recommends it should be established as soon as possible due to timing and cost factors.
All projects planned along California’s coast require permits from regulatory agencies. Depending on the project, multiple permits are often required. These take time (often years) and are a common complaint among planners and project engineers. In addition, SLR mitigation and adaptation projects are extremely costly. Therefore, the Grand Jury recognizes that our locally elected state officials should be asked to help expedite our SLR plans and assist the County in securing funding from all available sources: state, national, and non-profit foundations.
The Grand Jury believes SLR planning needs to be a priority among all elected officials in the County. The County of Humboldt; the cities of Arcata and Eureka; and the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation, and Conservation District should formally state their immediate and continuous support for, and commitment to, SLR mitigation and adaptation efforts.