Profile: Ashley Sprague
Ashley¡¯s research project explored local erosion control needs by studying coastal vulnerabilities and identifying sustainable adaptation opportunities for the community of Negril, Jamaica.

Adapting to climate change is an extremely complex issue for communities such as Negril, where the local economy depends on an actively eroding and highly developed beach environment. Actions are required to protect and restore coastal ecosystems, including the beach, seagrass beds, and coral reefs in order to make the community more resilient while still supporting the important tourism industry.

Ashley worked closely with the Partnership Caribbean Community Climate Change Adaptation (ParCA), a five-year project of the CARIBSAVE partnership and the University of Waterloo. ParCA is studying small and medium-sized coastal communities in Jamaica, Tobago, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island to identify the impact of and response to climate change.

Ashley collected data to assess Negril¡¯s vulnerability to climate change using two approaches: GIS shoreline classification mapping (physical vulnerability) and collecting local ecological knowledge through the Community Based Vulnerability Assessment method (socio-economic vulnerability).

¡°I have developed many skills and have gained tremendous insight into the factors that make coastal communities vulnerable to climate change¡¦. The skills I have gained will greatly benefit my work in Nova Scotia. I am extremely grateful to the Robin Rigby Trust for providing me with this invaluable opportunity.¡±

Ashley has now returned to her position of Restoration Coordinator at the Ecology Action Centre in Halifax.

Sprague Midterm Report (pdf)
Sprague Final Report