Global practitioner-led workshops in early 2022 revealed significant confusion regarding the state of sea level rise science. Issues included indecipherable technical jargon; an abundance of information, sometimes conflicting; and the speed with which new projections emerge in both scientific journals and media reports (Boyle et al, 2022, https://doi.org/10.26077/npej-vw36). Not surprisingly, a recent global survey of practitioners who are planning adaptation responses to sea-level rise (Hirschfeld et al 2023, https://doi.org/10.1038/s43247-023-00703-x) revealed widely varying approaches to the identification of sea-level projections to underpin adaptation investment. Over 25% of respondents were not using projections at all, while a majority of jurisdictions were using a single projection for all time frames, which contradicts widely recommended practice. High end projections in use ranged from below one meter to above three meters in 2100. The current environment creates risk of maladaptation.
PEERS was formed in part to create practice-centered collaboration between practitioners and our science partners to address the sometimes chaotic communication between these communities. PEERS is currently visioning an “Actionable Science Working Group” to create a durable collaborative infrastructure to help meet practitioner need for clear, concise information on which to base adaptation action.