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23 N. Coast Hwy


Landward Migration Zones

What happens to Oregon’s tidal wetlands with sea level rise?

Midcoast watersheds council landward migration zones (LMZ) PRoject

Tidal wetlands are very important parts of the estuary ecosystem, providing food, shelter, flow dampening, flood attenuation, and sediment capturing services critical to salmon, humans and many other fish and wildlife species.  However, these wetlands occur at only certain elevations in the estuary and are vulnerable to sea level rise (SLR). The MidCoast Watershed Council modeled the impacts of six SLR scenarios in 23 Oregon estuaries south of the Columbia.  Its products include maps of the 4.7' SLR scenario, a prioritization for each area using this SLR scenario; tables that shows the acreage of tidal wetland areas lost under each scenario, project posters, a report and a presentation that explains the project; and shapefiles of information of impacts of each SLR scenario for each estuary, prioritization information and metadata for users with GIS expertise. These tools will help watershed councils, land trusts, soil and water conservation districts, coastal city and county planners, and agencies plan into the future and begin working with landowners of properties upslope of current wetland areas on conservation and restoration opportunities.  Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB) partners in the project included the USFWS Coastal Program, the MidCoast Watersheds Council, and the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission. Technical expertise came for the Estuary Technical Group of the Institute of Applied Ecology.


Examples of products produced for each estuary (Siletz)

4.7 Siletz crosshatch.jpg

Potential future tidal wetlands maps provide a comparison of the 4.7 feet of SLR scenario and the current landscape.

Siletz Prioritization.jpg

Prioritization maps for each estuary show the Landward Migration Zone area priorities based on the five scoring criteria (See final report for full scoring criteria).

Siletz Bay Bar Chart w years.jpg

Bar charts for each estuary show the current (0.0 feet) LMZ area in acres, as well as the expected LMZ areas under six sea level rise scenarios.

Permalinks to all the products and data

We are currently working with Oregon State University to host our GIS Data, check back soon for links.

Permalinks to map documents are below.