The New Hampshire Coastal Risk and Hazards Commission was established in 2013 by bi-partisan legislation (SB 163 / Chapter 188) introduced by Senator David Watters (District 4). The legislation arose from concerns that neither the state nor coastal municipalities are adequately prepared for projected coastal flooding risks associated with climate change.

The purpose of the Commission, as stated in the law, is to “recommend legislation, rules and other actions to prepare for projected sea-level rise and other coastal watershed hazards such as storms, increased river flooding and storm water runoff, and the risks such hazards pose to municipalities and state assets in New Hampshire.”

Further, in carrying out this charge, the Commission is specifically directed to “review National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other scientific agency projections of coastal storm inundation and flood risk to determine the appropriate information, data, and property risks” to incorporate into its recommendations.

By law, the Commission was scheduled to sunset on December 1, 2016.