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Waterfront Conference 2023
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TBA [clear filter]
Monday, May 8
 

10:45am EDT

Affordable Housing Should Be a National Climate Adaptation Strategy
Displacement and migration due to climate impacts are now commonplace. Hurricane Ian and other recent major events have laid bare the need for national, holistic policy for relocation that is forced upon communities by climate change. This panel explores the role affordable housing must play in relocation and climate migration as part of the country’s growing response to climate change. Failed comprehensive planning can result in furthering housing disparities, loss of personal assets, homelessness, and speculative real estate development after disaster. Speakers explore these challenges along with solutions that can advance through national and state-level housing policy.

Monday May 8, 2023 10:45am - 11:45am EDT
TBA

10:45am EDT

No Turbines Yet, But Offshore Wind Is Here
Join a discussion and conversation that orients us to the players, locations, planning, construction, and timelines for the offshore wind deployment underway in New York and New Jersey.  Along with the basics of the field, questions speakers will cover include: who are all the developers? What are New York State and New Jersey doing with the industry now? What will be built and when? Who is partnered with whom?

Monday May 8, 2023 10:45am - 11:45am EDT
TBA

10:45am EDT

New Jersey Is the Nation’s Leader in Climate Commitments
From offshore wind investments to flood risk disclosure laws and climate education mandates, New Jersey is leading the nation’s response to climate change. This panel examines the state’s recent laws, policies, and investments, and discusses what it means both for the future of the state and as a model for the rest of the country. What are the political and environmental reasons for New Jersey’s progress? What was the role of the advocacy community and what must be done to maintain and grow commitments? Is New Jersey a catalyst for national standards and how do we grow momentum?

Monday May 8, 2023 10:45am - 11:45am EDT
TBA

10:45am EDT

Setting Priorities in Maritime Decarbonization
The maritime and shipping industries face a challenge in determining where to first invest in decarbonizing operations to meet the International Maritime Organization’s goal of significantly cutting greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping. From electrifying fleets to alternative fuels, the industry has multiple options. This panel covers the investments needed and those taking shape in the most promising technology that will be possible within the next five to ten years.

Monday May 8, 2023 10:45am - 11:45am EDT
TBA

10:45am EDT

Managing Social Media’s Role in Community Engagement Efforts
Social media plays a rarely explored role in communications that occur to and within communities facing neighborhood-scale changes from infrastructure projects. This panel discusses social media as both a driver of support and of opposition, and the ways project practitioners can manage and address its power and drawbacks. Changes in the use of Twitter will be addressed as well as the role of social media in crisis communications.

Monday May 8, 2023 10:45am - 11:45am EDT
TBA

2:00pm EDT

The Harbor and Tributaries Study: What We Need to Know Now
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ NY & NJ Harbor & Tributaries Focus Area Feasibility Study (HATS), designed to ensure comprehensive solutions to historic flooding, has been met with both enthusiasm and consternation. This discussion considers what the region might realistically expect from the Army Corps of Engineers, both states, and New York City for HATS funding, implementation, and execution of projects. What are the right planning projections? How do we justify billions in investment that may not protect us before 2040 or 2050? Among the focal points for discussion are timelines, costs, state and federal processes, and other non-project, non-technical aspects of the study.

Monday May 8, 2023 2:00pm - 2:50pm EDT
TBA

2:00pm EDT

Offshore Wind: Sustainability, Nature, and Ecology
The ocean can be a crowded place. A home for marine mammals, fish, and shellfish, as well as human infrastructure—our oceans are a key to our future and the future of the planet. The environmental impacts of offshore wind farms on habitats, aquatic life, and birds has been a subject of research and analysis focused on determining the role of offshore wind in ocean systems and wildlife. This panel reviews the potential impacts to animal life and ecology, current environmental research, biodiversity metrics, and opportunities to mitigate impacts.

Monday May 8, 2023 2:00pm - 2:50pm EDT
TBA

2:00pm EDT

On Track for More Marine Plastic than Fish by 2050
Plastic use has increased dramatically over the past twenty years. The United States is one of the world's largest consumers of plastics and produces more plastic waste than any other country. Plastic bag bans in New York and New Jersey are steps in the right direction, but more is required at the local, state, and federal levels to tackle this monumental issue. This panel will discuss the problems and solutions at the local level and explore efforts from around the nation and the world that can serve as examples of a path toward comprehensive regional solutions.

Monday May 8, 2023 2:00pm - 2:50pm EDT
TBA

2:00pm EDT

Addressing Decades of Deterioration: Deferred Wharf and Pier Maintenance
Years of deferred maintenance on the historic piers and wharves in the New York–New Jersey harbor are translating into billions of dollars needed to keep land-based port operations at current levels. Adding the impacts climate change will have on existing infrastructure, the infrastructure price tag for Port of New York and New Jersey is staggering. How will the Port Authority and governments in both states rise to meet this challenge? What will be required of the private sector and what policies and priorities must be addressed by both states for a sustainable future?

Monday May 8, 2023 2:00pm - 2:50pm EDT
TBA

2:00pm EDT

The Imperative to Go Beyond Public Meetings
The full menu of methods for informing communities and obtaining public input is vast, yet many continue to rely on the use of public meetings or open houses as the primary tool for public participation. What is the full menu of tools for involving communities, soliciting information, gathering input, and building trust?  What else is needed to make sure methods go beyond the public meeting model? What methods are most equitable and what are the costs and implications of a wider range of commitments to other methods by project sponsors?

Monday May 8, 2023 2:00pm - 2:50pm EDT
TBA

3:05pm EDT

Waterfront Permitting in the Age of Climate Change
Community groups and design professionals are sounding the alarm about roadblocks within the waterfront permitting process of New York City and other jurisdictions. The importance of directly confronting the regulatory environment’s effects on waterfront and coastal permitting is greater now than ever. Given the scale and dimensions of the green, climate-resilient infrastructure needed in frontline and waterfront communities this is a timely discussion. Stakeholders point to the lack of flexibility for innovative design, permit review times, disincentives for innovation, and the complexity of permitting public access projects. This panel takes a hard look at the current system and opens a strong discussion on options for reform that prevent backsliding.

Monday May 8, 2023 3:05pm - 3:55pm EDT
TBA

3:05pm EDT

Offshore Wind’s Other Workforce Gap: Filling Roles in Today’s Planning and Development Phases
Much of the offshore wind workforce development effort has been focused on high-volume roles in construction and technicians. Yet it is clear gaps have emerged in permitting, planning, and engineering. This session considers questions such as: What are the pre-construction gaps in employment affecting both government and industry? What is the role of colleges and how can college programs better prepare white collar graduates for the offshore wind industry? How do you create a bridge between training programs and hiring?

Monday May 8, 2023 3:05pm - 3:55pm EDT
TBA

3:05pm EDT

Mussels as the Great Harbor Cleaner
The bivalve we hear the least about is the mighty mussel, a filter feeder competing with the oyster for the charismatic spotlight in the quest to restore the New York–New Jersey harbor. While the oyster is a major and important player, mussels also provide great ecological benefits and could be put to the great harbor restoration task. This panel looks at the opportunity for mussels as a major part of restoration initiatives and the research currently underway.

Monday May 8, 2023 3:05pm - 3:55pm EDT
TBA

3:05pm EDT

The Truck Congestion Crisis and Ports: Interrelated Crisis, Interrelated Solutions
Truck congestion near port terminals, as well as on roads, bridges, and in neighborhoods is reaching a crisis point. With new local legislation proposed to curb neighborhood truck traffic and the push to decrease the size of highways such as the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, the time for comprehensive solutions, including waterborne ones, is here. This panel explores the impact of truck traffic on local communities, current and ongoing analysis of the problem of truck congestion, and the solutions proposed that need investment and prioritization by industry, government, and the Port Authority.

Monday May 8, 2023 3:05pm - 3:55pm EDT
TBA

3:05pm EDT

Lowering the Tension: Resilience, Development, and the New Wave of Environmentalism
A wave of energetic resistance has been rising against key resilience projects and infrastructure development. Some projects have become mired in public controversy, with epithets such as NIMBYism (Not In My Backyard) and BANANAs (Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anyone) thrown back and forth. These dynamics of community opposition present challenges for the future of climate-resilient infrastructure projects. As neighborhoods and communities face change, how can we steer the environmental movement to think creatively and innovatively about what our future communities need to look like? What are strategies that work for engagement processes experiencing resistance and hardship? How can projects that expect resistance prepare for it? How do design teams balance incorporating legitimate community concerns with misinformation? What has worked well and why?

Monday May 8, 2023 3:05pm - 3:55pm EDT
TBA
 
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