On January 21, 2021, the State Water Management Board (“Board”) revealed draft amendments to the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Space Designation and Administration Rules that might require localities to include coastal resilience and local weather change adaptation into native land use ordinances.
This draft regulation implements amendments to the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act (“CBPA”) handed in the course of the 2020 Basic Meeting which requires native governments add consideration of “coastal resilience and adaption to sea-level rise and local weather change” to native Chesapeake Bay Preservation Space land use ordinances, and particularly any proposed land growth in CBPA Useful resource Safety Areas (“RPAs”). RPAs are regulated waterbodies and related corridors of environmentally delicate land that lie alongside or close to the shorelines of streams, rivers and different waterways which drain into the Chesapeake Bay, together with a buffer of land inside 100 ft of those options. Of their pure situation, RPAs defend water high quality, filter pollution from stormwater runoff, scale back the quantity of stormwater runoff, forestall erosion, and carry out different essential organic and ecological features.
The draft regulation would require native governments contemplate future floodplain, water degree, storm surge, or different local weather impacts that could possibly be affected by growth or actions throughout the RPA. It might require consideration of a possible influence vary of at least 30 years, and the usage of modeling or forecasting that includes Nationwide Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s 2017 Intermediate-Excessive sea degree projection.
The proposed regulation would prohibit native governments from granting exceptions to RPA growth limits the place the plans for that exercise didn’t contemplate the impacts of local weather change, together with sea degree rise, and would prohibit growth throughout the seaward 50 ft of the RPA.
The regulation supplies further standards native governments should contemplate in allowing local weather change adaptation actions inside RPAs. These standards require the incorporation or preservation of vegetation and timber, minimization of impervious land cowl, and minimization of land disturbance. These standards additionally favor dwelling shoreline tasks that preserve or set up a vegetative buffer inland of the dwelling shoreline to the utmost extent practicable.
The proposed regulation would lead to elevated scrutiny for any proposed exercise inside a CBPA RPA particularly for proposed growth throughout the 50-foot seaward portion. Furthermore, builders and landowners could face elevated prices related to the preparation of a local weather change evaluation, and can face elevated strain to include design options which are extra sustainable and enhance the event’s long-term resiliency.
Native governments would have three years to implement adjustments to their native ordinances after the regulation turns into ultimate. At this stage of the regulation’s growth, the Board is in search of public remark, which is able to open 2/1/2021 via 5/3/2021.
The Proposed Rules, to be codified at 9VAC25-830-155, will be discovered online.
Feedback could also be submitted to Justin Williams, VA Division of Environmental High quality, P.O. Field 1105, Richmond, VA 23218; Cellphone: 804-698-4195; Fax: 804-698-4116; E-mail: Justin.Williams@deq.virginia.gov. Feedback might also be submitted via the Public Discussion board characteristic of the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall web site.