2016 National Geographic Explorer Victoria Herrmann is a geographer who works with coastal communities in the U.S. and U.S. territories on climate change adaptation. She works closely with local leaders to identify what is needed to safeguard coastal communities from the inevitable impacts of global climate change, including rising sea levels. In this National Geographic Inspires video, Victoria talks about climate change as a human story. She discusses how the solutions to adapt to these changes and to mitigate our impact on the planet requires listening to human stories to understand what solutions—both nature-based and human-made—can be utilized locally to respond to the effects of climate change.

Take the online course “Teaching Global Climate Change in Your Classroom” and practice innovative ways to visualize the changing climate with your students as we all seek a planet in balance.

Noun

a modification of an organism or its parts that makes it more fit for existence. An adaptation is passed from generation to generation.

Noun

gradual changes in all the interconnected weather elements on our planet.

environment
Noun

conditions that surround and influence an organism or community.

Noun

act in which earth is worn away, often by water, wind, or ice.

flood
Verb

to overflow or cover in water or another liquid.

mitigation
Noun

process of becoming or making something milder and less severe.

Noun

protection from use.

Noun

increase in the average reach of the ocean. The current sea level rise is 1.8 millimeters (.07 inch) per year.