On June 6, 2021, Hawaiʻi became one of the only states in the U.S. to pass a mandatory sea level rise real estate disclosure bill. The passage of SB 474 requires sellers of residential real estate in Hawaiʻi to disclose whether their properties are in a sea level rise exposure area. The areas included are those that are susceptible to sea level rise impacts based on a 3.2-foot increase in sea level by 2050. The passage of this bill further strengthens the state's ability to limit harmful shoreline hardening projects like seawalls.
There is no denying that the impacts of the climate crisis have become more damaging and unavoidable. Between extreme weather events and increasing sea level rise, our coastal communities are in harm’s way. Often times, homes have been exposed to coastal hazards, and indeed will be exposed to more coastal erosion as sea levels rise increases. Surfrider strongly believes that potential homeowners must be made aware of any vulnerabilities their new home might face. That is precisely why Surfrider is supporting SB 474.
The financial damage caused by climate change impacts will only continue to grow and therefore it is imperative that hardworking homeowners are not left holding the bag when it comes to impacts of sea level rise.