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Hermosa Beach is Preparing for Sea-Level Rise by Using Virtual Reality to Involve Community Members in Climate Solutions

Post Date:02/11/2020 4:00 PM

HERMOSA BEACH IS PREPARING FOR SEA-LEVEL RISE BY USING
VIRTUAL REALITY TO INVOLVE COMMUNITY MEMBERS IN CLIMATE SOLUTIONS

Look Ahead Hermosa Beach Initiative Seeks to Raise Awareness and Encourage Residents to
Engage in City Discussion to Prepare for Sea Level Rise Impacts and Reduce Carbon Emissions.

HERMOSA BEACH – The Hermosa Beach Pier, Pier Plaza and The Strand are among the most popular destinations in the City, so it may be hard to imagine them submerged in water due to rising sea levels.

The City of Hermosa Beach will help the public see just what that would be like with a new initiative, Look Ahead Hermosa Beach, which uses virtual reality (VR) to provide an immersive experience of the city’s risks of flooding and how climate action can make a difference in protecting the community. The City is launching this program in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey, Climate Access and Whitespace VR.

 Look Ahead Hermosa Beach will be available to the public from noon to 6 p.m. on February 19 at the Hermosa Beach Farmers’ Market on Pier Plaza and at other venues and events so that the public can visualize how climate change may threaten familiar locations and learn how these sites can benefit from climate solutions and get involved.

“Climate change and rising sea levels will significantly impact coastal communities like Hermosa Beach, where the beach serves as the primary economic, recreational and cultural focus of our community,” said Hermosa Beach Mayor Mary Campbell. “Look Ahead Hermosa Beach is a valuable public education program that will make it possible for community members and visitors to visualize the impacts of sea level rise to help increase their awareness and engage them with the City in determining how to reduce carbon emissions and get involved in climate solutions.”

Look Ahead Hermosa Beach includes facts about climate change in the region and an opportunity for community members to share their concerns and opinions with the City of Hermosa Beach. Users can explore the City’s website and sign up for the City of Hermosa Beach’s newsletter to learn more about the City’s plan to cut carbon and increase resilience. The City’s website also provides an opportunity to sign up to receive notifications to attend City of Hermosa Beach climate-related planning meetings and register to get emergency notifications.

“Virtual reality provides a powerful tool for communicating about climate risks and motivating action,” said Cara Pike, Climate Access executive director. “Look Ahead makes it easy to understand what’s at stake and what’s possible, and for community members to share their opinions and get involved.”

This initiative is part of the City’s efforts to prepare and certify a Local Coastal Program in coordination with the California Coastal Commission. Coastal access, recreational facilities and coastal hazards are among the policy areas that must be addressed to comply with the California Coastal Act.

For more information on Look Ahead Hermosa Beach, please visit:

Web: http://hermosabeach.gov/lookahead

About Hermosa Beach

Founded in 1907, Hermosa Beach is a thriving community of some 20,000 residents. Located on the southern end of the Santa Monica Bay in Los Angeles County, with beaches ranked among the best in the world, Hermosa Beach has been recognized for its work to highlight Southern California beach culture, foster a vibrant local economy and protect coastal and environmental resources.

To learn more about Hermosa Beach, please visit the City website: www.hermosabeach.gov/
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