Carper Kicks Off Coastal Protection Week to Highlight Climate Change Challenges

Carper and Blunt Rochester Toured Two Coastal Communities Grappling with Climate Impacts 

SLAUGHTER BEACH, Del. — Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper and Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (both D-Del.), toured parts of Slaughter Beach and Indian River Inlet to witness how climate change is threatening Delaware’s coastline.

They were joined by Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) Secretary Shawn Garvin, as well as Major General William “Butch” Graham, Deputy Commanding General for Civil and Emergency Operations of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Lieutenant Colonel Ramon Brigantti, District Commander for the Philadelphia District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and local leaders.

“Coastal communities are working around the clock to protect their homes, businesses, and essential infrastructure from the growing threat of climate change, but they can’t do it alone,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper. “In Delaware, increased flooding has shut off access to hospitals and schools and displaced residents. Today, we saw these impacts first-hand, and discussed how the federal government can do a better job of helping our state and local governments build their infrastructure in a more resilient, forward-thinking way.”

“Today’s visits to Slaughter Beach and Rehoboth Beach made clear that Delaware’s coastlines continue to bear the brunt of the effects of climate change,” said Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester. “It’s critical that coastal communities in Delaware and across the country have the resources they need to restore their shorelines, mitigate the effects of climate change, protect wildlife habitats, and safeguard their local economies. I look forward to tomorrow’s hearing to continue working on how the federal government and stakeholders can further support efforts to make coastal communities more resilient.” 

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) plays a critical role in providing shoreline and riverbank protection. To help the Corps address these challenges, Senator Carper and Congresswoman Blunt Rochester introduced the Shoreline Health Oversight, Restoration, Resilience, and Enhancement Act (SHORRE) Act earlier this month. They were joined by U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. and Congressman Garret Graves (both R-La.). This bicameral, bipartisan legislation would restore our nation’s riverbanks and coastlines, while also making communities across our country more resilient to the effects of climate change. This includes rising sea levels, extreme weather, flooding, and erosion.