2.5 Social, community, and equity

Have those conducting the project worked with all relevant local and community stakeholders to educate, engage, and garner feedback on plans and research?

Our principles

  • Where possible, we target our work to benefit communities among the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and where the greatest socioeconomic, mitigation, and adaptation benefits can be realized.

  • Communities impacted by our work, including coastal and indigenous communities, must be meaningfully engaged prior to conducting research, and longer term engagement strategies must be developed. Running Tide must provide mechanisms for ongoing feedback and grievance resolution with affected communities.

  • Assessments of potential community impacts must be conducted and monitored over the life of a project. Where possible, these assessments should include quantitative metrics.

How we demonstrate these principles

  • Running Tide operates in communities that are at the frontline of the climate crisis, including working waterfronts and forest communities. It is Running Tide’s responsibility to make sure our impact on communities is positive, to take proactive measures to support the maintenance and resilience of healthy communities, and to ensure that the perspectives and guidance of community leaders are sought out and integrated into the project and operational decisions.

  • To date, the primary community in which we operate in Iceland is Akranes, a historical fishing town. We have engaged directly with town leaders and the broader community to design and refine our plans and proposed research, including through town halls and local meetings, site tours, and speaking directly with leaders from potentially impacted fishing industries. Throughout our prior and ongoing engagement with the community, we have received positive feedback about our work in the area, in particular as a new opportunity to utilize the community’s experience and skills in maritime operations, natural resource management, and ocean sustainability practices.

  • After initial consultation, there has not been concern to date from other sectors, such as commercial shipping, as research projects are conducted in the open ocean outside of shipping lanes, and the carbon buoys of our system design are small and distributed. In fact, many of our research activities in Iceland are deployed in partnership with a leading global shipping company, Eimskip.

  • Running Tide measures and will report on baseline socioeconomic impact metrics related to project activities at the end of each deployment season, including job creation, economic development, impact on local income disparity, and more. Over time, we will integrate this reporting into deployment-specific metrics.

As our work progresses, we will expand our quantitative socioeconomic impact reporting to establish baseline conditions in the communities we touch. Additionally, because Running Tide’s current operations are localized, direct engagement and feedback mechanisms with the communities we touch to date has been fairly straightforward, and any grievances or concerns raised by members of the community can be addressed directly to the Running Tide team. We anticipate the need to build more expansive and robust feedback and grievance mechanisms as we expand geographically. Similarly, while tribal nations or indigenous people are , we expect this to be a significant area of focus going forward.

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