OFFICE FOR COASTAL MANAGEMENT

Coastal Resilience Grant Program Project Summaries

Flooded street in suburban neighborhood; water up to High Water sign

This competitive grant program funds projects that are helping coastal communities and ecosystems prepare for and recover from extreme weather events, climate hazards, and changing ocean conditions. The Coastal Resilience Grants Program has funded projects in the following regions:

WEST COAST AND ALASKA

Connecting the Dots and Building Coastal Resilience in the San Diego Region

Applicant: University of San Diego

Recommended Federal Funding: $689,850 (FY 2015)

Match: $408,000

The San Diego Regional Climate Collaborative, a partnership of local and regional agencies and organizations, will lead a multifaceted project to protect the county's approximately 70 miles of coastline from vulnerabilities to sea level rise, coastal flooding, and extreme weather events. By filling key information gaps and providing additional legal, scientific, and economic analyses, the project will help the cities of Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach, Del Mar, San Diego, and Imperial Beach develop coordinated sea level rise vulnerability assessments and integrated coastal resilience strategies. These efforts will be paired with an innovative and consistent regional communication strategy that also expands public understanding and engagement in coastal resilience planning and actions. This comprehensive strategy will result in implementable actions that reduce the region's risks and vulnerabilities and build regional coastal resilience. More Information

Project Partners: San Diego Climate Science Alliance, Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve, Southwest Wetlands Interpretive Association, Coastal Frontiers Corporation, Revell Coastal, Nexus Planning Consultants, Environmental Law Institute, Cities of Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Solana Beach, Del Mar, San Diego, and Imperial Beach, California

Improving Risk Communication and Leveraging Existing Programs in Washington State to Build Capacity and Enhance Resilience in Coastal Communities

Applicant: Washington Sea Grant (University of Washington)

Recommended Federal Funding: $879,255 (FY 2016)

Match: $442,180

Communities in Washington State face significant risk from the impacts of sea level rise, storm surges, and shoreline erosion. Washington Sea Grant will lead a partnership of state and local managers, conservation groups, and academic scientists to enhance coastal community resilience through cutting-edge science, community pilot projects, and revised state guidance and restoration project design. The work will increase understanding of coastal risks and impacts and improve existing planning tools. The effort will also include significant outreach to ensure that new information and approaches are shared with coastal communities across the state.

Project Partners: Washington State Department of Ecology's Coastal Zone Management Program, University of Washington Climate Impacts Group and other departments, Estuary and Salmon Restoration Program (Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office), Island County Department of Natural Resources, City of Tacoma, Western Washington University, and The Nature Conservancy.

Preparing the Oregon Coast for a Catastrophic Tsunami

Applicant: Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development

Recommended Federal Funding: $285,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $142,500

For this project, new tsunami evacuation maps, improved evacuation procedures, and innovative land use strategies will be created for Port Orford, Newport, Lincoln City, Rockaway Beach, and Gearhart, Oregon. Local leaders and citizens will work together to investigate community vulnerabilities and identify land use strategies that provide the greatest potential to lessen the loss of life and property from a catastrophic tsunami. The Department of Land Conservation and Development, in partnership with the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries, will lead this effort.

Project Partners: Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries, Port Orford, Newport, Lincoln City, Rockaway Beach, and Gearhart, Oregon

Ravenswood Restoration Project

Applicant: Ducks Unlimited, Inc.

Recommended Federal Funding: $1,500,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $1,000,000

Ducks Unlimited will work with NOAA to implement the Ravenswood Restoration Project in the South San Francisco Bay. This project will restore 280 acres of former salt evaporation ponds to estuarine habitat as part of the larger 15,000-acre South Bay Salt Ponds Restoration Project, the largest restoration project on the West Coast. The project will restore wetland and channel habitats, enhance habitat connectivity, and improve protection of Bay communities from extreme weather and changing environmental conditions. The integration of levee improvements with tidal wetland habitat restoration is a cost-effective and nature-based approach to provide shoreline and community flood protection. Restored habitat will support sustainable fisheries and contribute to the recovery of protected resources—specifically the Central California Coast population of steelhead and forage fish populations in the South San Francisco Bay.

Project Partners: City of Menlo Park, Santa Clara Valley Water District, San Francisquito Creek Joint Powers Authority, Save San Francisco Bay Association (Save the Bay)

Butano Channel Restoration and Resiliency Project

Applicant: San Mateo County Resource Conservation District

Recommended Federal Funding: $1,464,716 (FY 2017)

Match: $1,166,500

The San Mateo County Resource Conservation District will work with NOAA and other partners to re-establish 8,000 feet of the historic Butano Creek. They will remove 45,000 cubic yards of sediment and reuse it to restore 28 acres of degraded marsh. Sediment accumulation has filled the historic channel of Butano Creek, causing local flooding and blocking salmon from accessing key habitat in the watershed. Restoring the connectivity of Butano Creek through Butano Marsh will re-establish access to 10 miles of habitat, including critical refuge habitat for Endangered Species Act-listed steelhead and coho. The project will also increase resilience in this system by reducing the frequency and duration of flooding, improving the public safety and economic conditions for the Pescadero community.

Project Partners: U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Peninsula Open Space Trust, Trout Unlimited, American Rivers, California State Parks, local landowners and farmers

Restoring Resiliency in Puget Sound Stillaguamish River Delta

Applicant: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

Recommended Federal Funding: $1,446,985 (FY 2017)

Match: $1,000,000

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife will work with NOAA and other local partners to restore 337 acres of wetlands in the Stillaguamish River delta of Puget Sound, Washington. As a gateway to the Stillaguamish River basin spawning and rearing areas, the restored estuarine habitat will provide valuable foraging opportunities and refuge habitat for migratory species, including Endangered Species Act-listed Puget Sound Chinook. This restoration project will breach existing dikes, build a setback dike, re-establish and enhance off-channel habitat, and re-establish tidal flow into the area. Not only will a new setback dike provide protection to critical infrastructure and private property, but the restored habitat will also provide natural flood protection because it can absorb and store large amounts of rainwater or water runoff during a storm, in addition to providing a buffer for tidal influence during periods of high water.

Project Partners: Stillaguamish Tribe, Skagit River Systems Cooperative, The Nature Conservancy

Kilisut Harbor Channel Restoration

Applicant: North Olympic Salmon Coalition

Recommended Federal Funding: $548,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $274,000

The North Olympic Salmon Coalition, in collaboration with NOAA and the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe, will replace an earthen causeway and culverts with a bridge that will allow for tidal flow between southern Kilisut Harbor and Oak Bay. The project will restore 27 acres of tidal wetlands and improve water quality in Kilisut Harbor. Water quality improvements are expected to lower water temperature and reduce the potential for low dissolved-oxygen levels. This will help shellfish and Endangered Species Act-listed Puget Sound Chinook and Hood Canal summer chum. Upgrading the only road access to an island community by raising the road and embedded utilities will improve the community’s resilience by reducing its vulnerability to flooding.

Project Partners: Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe, U.S. Navy, Washington Department of Transportation, Washington Department of Natural Resources

Winter Lake Restoration Project

Applicant: Beaver Slough Drainage District

Recommended Federal Funding: $750,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $375,000

The Beaver Slough Drainage District, NOAA, and its partners will restore 407 acres of tidal wetlands, provide overwinter habitat for juvenile coho salmon, and re-establish fish access to 1,300 acres within the Coquille River estuary of southwestern Oregon. The project will create high-quality habitat by restoring more than seven miles of tidal channels, removing drainage canals and interior dikes, replacing undersized culverts with bridges to improve fish passage, and planting more than 200 acres with wetland plants. This project will address a key limiting factor for Endangered Species Act-listed coho salmon populations by providing an off-channel, slow-moving water refuge for juvenile coho and will add approximately 122,000 smolts annually to the Coquille River. This project also establishes new stakeholder partnerships with agricultural and recreational hunting communities.

Project Partners: Beaver Slough Drainage District, The Nature Conservancy, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, China Creek Gun Club, Coquille Indian Tribe, Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board, U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service

GREAT LAKES

Improving Economic Security in Coastal Wisconsin

Applicant: Wisconsin Department of Administration

Recommended Federal Funding: $840,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $420,518

Southeastern Wisconsin wants to reduce damages caused by coastal hazards, such as erosion, coastal storms, and fluctuating water levels. For this project, guidance will be developed with regard to options for protecting bluff, beach, and harbor ecosystems and the coastal economy. Exploring future possibilities through scenario development and improving risk communication are also parts of the effort. The Wisconsin Department of Administration’s Wisconsin Coastal Management Program is leading this project, and participation involves four coastal counties, 22 coastal municipalities, and various state and local organizations.

Project Partners: University of Wisconsin Sea Grant Institute, University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission

Building Coastal Resilience through Capital Improvements Planning: Guidance for Practitioners

Applicant: Association of State Floodplain Managers and the American Planning Association

Recommended Federal Funding: $703,028 (FY 2015)

Match: $351,515

The planning and construction of capital improvement projects, such as community buildings and infrastructure, present an opportunity to incorporate new, high-impact approaches for building resilience. But which approaches make the most sense in different situations? Two national organizations based in the Great Lakes region, the Association of State Floodplain Managers and the American Planning Association, will work together to answer these questions and develop national guidance by researching cutting-edge techniques used in different sectors throughout the United States and through the experience gained in in two pilot communities: Toledo, Ohio, and Savannah, Georgia. The guidance developed through this project will be used to educate the 57,000 members of these organizations and others regarding the most successful techniques. More Information

Project Partners: Association of State Floodplain Managers, American Planning Association, Digital Coast Partnership

NORTHEAST

Resilient Cape Cod: A Path Forward with Innovative Tool Development and Public Engagement

Applicant: Cape Cod Commission

Recommended Federal Funding: $522,348 (FY 2015)

Match: $258,927

The Cape Cod Commission and partners will undertake a public planning process to improve community understanding of climate change impacts, sea level rise scenarios, and various adaptation strategies. The planning process will include economic research, a public engagement process, and the development of communication tools to help residents and decision makers understand the environmental and socio-economic costs and benefits of different adaptation strategies. This information will be used to inform an adaptation plan for the Town of Barnstable, Massachusetts, to implement new policies and serve as a model for other Cape Cod towns.

Project Partners: The Association to Preserve Cape Cod, Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, Town of Barnstable and Barnstable County, Massachusetts

High Resolution Coastal Inundation Modeling and Advancement of Green Infrastructure and Living Shoreline Approaches in the Northeast

Applicant: Northeast Regional Association of Coastal and Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS)

Recommended Federal Funding: $891,243 (FY 2016)

Match: $456,257

Each year in the Northeast U.S., coastal storms cause considerable economic disruptions as a result of damages to property, infrastructure, and natural resources. The Northeast Regional Association of Coastal and Ocean Observing Systems (NERACOOS) will work to lessen these impacts. This project will document and predict coastal storm impacts and increase the implementation of sustainable, nature-based infrastructure approaches (living shorelines). The project will also fill high-priority data and capacity gaps, develop tools for decision-making, and improve communications and outreach.

Project Partners: Researchers from each of the coastal New England states, including University of Maine, University of New Hampshire, University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, University of Rhode Island, and University of Connecticut's Connecticut Institute for Resilience and Climate Adaptation. State coastal program members of the Northeast Regional Ocean Council (NROC), including Maine Coastal Program, New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, and Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council. Other partners, including The Nature Conservancy, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, RPS Applied Science Associates, Spaulding Environmental Associates, and NROC

Increasing Resilience through Application of Nature-Based Infrastructure

Applicant: The Nature Conservancy

Recommended Federal Funding: $999,999

Match: $500,000

This regional effort to increase resilience to sea level rise in New England is focused on increasing the effective use of nature-based infrastructure for reduced erosion and enhanced wave attenuation. The project team will develop region-specific information on suitable natural infrastructure types and benefits and will work with several communities to implement and monitor a range of nature-based coastal infrastructure projects. The experience gained here will benefit communities across the region and help to advance local, state, and national policies to promote effective use of the approach to reduce erosion and offer co-benefits to the community. The Nature Conservancy, in partnership with a consortium of state coastal zone management programs, is leading the project.

Project Partners: Maine Coastal Management Program, New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services Coastal Program, Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management, Rhode Island Coastal Resource Management Council, University of Connecticut, Northeast Regional Ocean Council

Removal of Upper and Lower Sawyer Mill Dams

Applicant: New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services

Recommended Federal Funding: $370,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $185,500

The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services, Sawyer Mill Associates, and NOAA will remove two 12-foot high dams on the Bellamy River, where it runs below the Sawyer Mill Apartment complex. These are the lowest two dams on the Bellamy River, a tributary to the Great Bay Estuary. The dams targeted for removal are rated as “high hazard” by the state. In addition to increasing safety for the residents and eliminating maintenance costs related to the dams, the project will remove contaminated sediment, allow fish to pass upstream to spawning habitats, and restore 21 acres of floodplain wetlands.

Project Partners: Sawyer Mill Associates, Inc., City of Dover, New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, New England Wild Flower Society, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, The Nature Conservancy

Improving Coastal Habitat and Community Resiliency in Quonochontaug Pond

Applicant: Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council

Recommended Federal Funding: $982,103 (FY 2017)

Match: $491,650

The Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council, in partnership with NOAA, will increase salt marsh surface elevations and restore natural marsh hydrology by placing a thin layer of sediment across 30 acres of degraded marsh within Quonochontaug Pond. Rhode Island salt marsh complexes serve as the first line of defense against coastal storms for coastal communities like Charlestown and Westerly. However, these salt marsh systems are among the most vulnerable to the effects of sea level rise. The primary goal of this project is to improve the condition and resilience of the marshes by increasing salt marsh surface elevations. The project will also improve a public access point and boat launch used for recreational activities, and improve nearby eelgrass habitat for commercial and recreational fisheries.

Project Partners: Town of Charlestown, Save the Bay, Salt Ponds Coalition, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Coastal Program, Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management

Jones River-Elm Street Dam Removal at Head of Tide

Applicant: Jones River Watershed Association

Recommended Federal Funding: $553,270 (FY 2017)

Match: $301,847

The Jones River Watershed Association, working with the Massachusetts Division of Ecological Restoration, Town of Kingston, NOAA, and other partners, will remove an undersized concrete dam and spillway that has limited capacity during flood events. This deficiency creates risks to surrounding property and damage to surrounding habitats. Removal of the dam will eliminate safety risks, liability, and maintenance costs associated with the dam, improve water quality, and increase spawning access to four miles of mainstem habitat and five miles of tributary for species such as shad and river herring.

Project Partners: Massachusetts Division of Ecological Restoration, Division of Marine Fisheries, Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, Town of Kingston

MID-ATLANTIC

New Jersey Fostering Regional Adaptation through Municipal Economic Scenarios (NJ FRAMES)

Applicant: New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection

Recommended Federal Funding: $898,656 (FY 2015)

Match: $450,344

Since Superstorm Sandy, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's Coastal Management Program has worked with an extensive network of partners to reduce New Jersey coastal communities' vulnerability to coastal hazards. Through this work, the state identified comprehensive regional planning as a high-impact strategy to build coastal resilience. In partnership with several organizations, the state will work with the 15 communities that make up the Two Rivers Council of Mayors in Monmouth County to perform a stakeholder-led scenario planning process, deploy new and enhanced decision-making tools, and develop consistent state- and community-level policy and practices that support resilience and adaptation actions. More Information

Project Partners: Jacques Cousteau National Estuarine Research Reserve, Rutgers University Climate Institute, Louis Berger, Borough of Oceanport, New Jersey

Project ARRK: Adaptation and Regional Resiliency Kit

Applicant: City of Virginia Beach

Recommended Federal Funding: $844,487 (FY 2016)

Match: $899,440

The City of Virginia Beach, located in the southeastern, or Tidewater, area of Virginia, has one of the highest rates of sea level rise on the Atlantic coast. It sits at the heart of the Hampton Roads region, home to 1.7 million people and a significant maritime industry, including the largest naval facility in the world. This project will prioritize and implement adaptation strategies such as the relocation or construction of infrastructure to address sea level rise impacts on land use and development. Because of the city's influence in the region, and the public engagement process included in this grants award project, this effort will benefit the greater Hampton Roads region.

Project Partners: City of Virginia Beach, Georgetown Climate Center, Hampton Roads Planning District Commission, Old Dominion University-Virginia Sea Grant, and Dewberry

Mid-Atlantic Regional Resilience: Linking Coastal Ocean Information to Enhance Economic, Social and Ecological Resilience

Applicant: Coastal States Stewardship Foundation on behalf of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean

Recommended Federal Funding: $514,507 (FY 2016)

Match: $257,253

The ocean plays a critical role in community resilience and is a fundamental source of economic and ecological value and productivity in the Mid-Atlantic, yet coastal communities are largely unaware of this critical role and how changing ocean conditions can impact the economy, society, and the environment. The Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean (MARCO) will leverage its partnerships to increase coastal community resilience by enhancing the public's understanding of the science behind changing ocean conditions and what this means in terms of ocean resources and coastal economies. Coastal and ocean stakeholders throughout the Mid-Atlantic region will also benefit from improved understanding of the relationships between changing ocean conditions and coastal economies, and community resilience.

Project Partners: Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean – MARCO (Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York), Mid-Atlantic Ocean Data Portal (principal: Monmouth University Urban Coast Institute), and Mid-Atlantic Regional Association Coastal Ocean Observing System – MARACOOS (principals: University of Delaware, Rutgers University)

Reducing Impacts of Storm Flooding through Natural and Nature-based Infrastructure in Virginia

Applicant: Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Recommended Federal Funding: $834,991 (FY 2017)

Match: $418,640

This effort is focused on addressing flooding issues across coastal Virginia through use of nature-based infrastructure. This includes developing informative tools that allow local planners in 37 coastal counties to determine suitable areas to implement natural infrastructure. Guidance for use in Virginia’s coastal habitats and other outcomes of this effort will assist local communities in implementing successful natural infrastructure plans and understanding the many co-benefits, including water quality improvements and flood risk reduction. The Virginia Institute of Marine Science, working with project partners that include the Virginia Coastal Policy Center, Wetlands Watch, and many state agencies, is leading this effort.

Project Partners: Virginia Coastal Policy Center, Wetlands Watch, Albemarle-Pamlico National Estuary Partnership

SOUTHEAST AND CARIBBEAN

Utilizing Regional Collaboration to Implement the National Disaster Recovery Framework in South Atlantic Coastal Communities

Applicant: Coastal States Stewardship Foundation

Recommended Federal Funding: $803,713 (FY 2015)

Match: $453,746

The disaster recovery process provides an opportunity to build long-term resilience to future hurricanes, flooding, and other hazards. Working across the four southeastern states, and in partnership with industry, regional organizations, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and NOAA, over 30 coastal communities will build upon the foundation laid out by the Governors' South Atlantic Alliance, strengthening the region's ability to recover from the next coastal disaster in ways that protect the economy and the environment. At the completion of the project, state and local emergency managers and planners will have updated information, tools, and plans to guide the disaster recovery process. In addition, the development of a regional "resilient business advisory network" will help prepare businesses by delivering better information and advising on critical support services. More Information

Project Partners: Southeast Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association, state emergency management agencies, state coastal management agencies, Federal Emergency Management Agency, The Nature Conservancy, South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium, business industry partners

Building Community Resilience to Water-Related Hazards in the Charleston, SC Region: A Charleston Resilience Network Initiative

Applicant: South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium

Recommended Federal Funding: $510,319 (FY 2016)

Match: $255,568

In the 25 years following the landfall of Hurricane Hugo, disaster planning efforts in the Charleston, South Carolina, region have greatly improved. However, chronic and episodic water-related hazards continue to challenge the region's ability to maintain and safeguard the infrastructure vital to the region's economic prosperity and social well-being. Keeping pace with rapid growth and changes in natural systems makes these challenges even more complex. By leveraging the capabilities of Charleston Resilience Network members and partners, this project will advance the collaborative approach necessary to understand vulnerabilities, educate stakeholders, and foster a unified strategy. The end result will be the effective implementation of infrastructure planning and operation, land use planning, and water management practices that minimize risks from chronic and episodic flooding events.

Project Partners: South Carolina Sea Grant Consortium, Charleston Resilience Network, College of Charleston, University of South Carolina, and The Citadel

A Regional Approach to Disaster Resiliency through Community Planning in Georgia

Applicant: Georgia Department of Natural Resources

Recommended Federal Funding: $370,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $303,000

Comprehensive disaster recovery and redevelopment plans will be developed for six coastal counties in Georgia: Bryan, Camden, Wayne, Effingham, Liberty, and Long. The goal is to ensure that the rebuilding that occurs after a catastrophic disaster or major storm aligns with local values and overcomes obstacles to innovative community reconstruction. Upon completion, Georgia will be the first state in the country to have recovery plans for all coastal counties. For this project, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Coastal Management Program, working in partnership with other federal and state agencies, will lead engagement with county officials and stakeholders and lead plan development. More Information

Project Partners: Georgia Conservancy, Georgia Emergency Management Agency–Homeland Security, Southeast Disaster Recovery Partnership, NOAA, Federal Emergency Management Agency

Low-Tech Rehabilitation of Coral Reef Ecosystem Services: Test Beds to Reduce Vulnerability

Applicant: University of Puerto Rico–Rio Piedras

Recommended Federal Funding: $200,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $100,000

The University of Puerto Rico will work with NOAA to develop a model to help identify and prioritize coral restoration sites that not only contribute to the recovery of federally listed coral species, but also provide significant coastal shoreline protection benefits by reducing the impacts of waves. The project will quantify and model the wave energy attenuation effect of coral reef restoration at multiple sites within the Northeast Puerto Rico Habitat Focus Area. Having this tool will allow partners to select restoration sites that contribute to the recovery of federally listed corals and optimize wave attenuation, potentially reducing the risk of property loss and vulnerability of housing and hotel infrastructure along the shoreline from extreme storm events.

Project Partners: Sociedad Ambiente Marino, Coralations, Inc., Puerto Rico Department of Natural and Environmental Resources

GULF OF MEXICO

A Systematic and Integrated Approach to Creating More Resilient Communities in the Gulf of Mexico Region

Applicant: Gulf of Mexico Alliance

Recommended Federal Funding: $867,700 (FY 2015)

Match: $493,000

While significant funding may be available to communities after a disaster, there are few funding opportunities for communities that want to take proactive measures to become more resilient. Through this project, the Gulf of Mexico Alliance and partners will help 10 Gulf of Mexico coastal communities enhance their overall resilience to future hazards through pilot projects using new and updated information and tools. The approach involves evaluating each community from a natural resource and human use perspective, and providing a small grant to implement cost-effective solutions to increase resilience. Project partners will also create a network to support additional regional coordination and collaboration for resilience efforts and sharing lessons learned.

Project Partners: Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Geological Survey of Alabama, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium

A Coastal Hazards Training Program for Local Government Officials along the Gulf Coast

Applicant: National Association of Counties Research Foundation

Recommended Federal Funding: $650,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $335,024

The goal for this project is to help communities better prepare for, recover from, and adapt to extreme weather and climate-related events. Included in the effort is a web-based professional education program for local government officials that includes best practices for communicating risk-related information and strategies for addressing coastal challenges. The program will include local workshops and technical assistance that supports team-based approaches for implementing hazard mitigation strategies at the regional level. This program will result in more resilient coastal economies and effective stewardship of natural resources along the Gulf Coast. The National Association of Counties Research Foundation, in partnership with the Association of State Floodplain Managers and Coastal States Organization, is leading this project.

Project Partners: Association of State Floodplain Managers, and Coastal States Organization

Overcoming Barriers to Flood Resilience in Northern Gulf of Mexico Coastal Communities

Applicant: Marine Environmental Sciences Consortium, Dauphin Island Sea Lab

Recommended Federal Funding: $496,285 (FY 2017)

Match: $250,689

Through a series of short films, small-grant funding, and technical assistance, this project will enhance the region’s ability to address coastal flooding impacts and recovery in Mississippi, Alabama, and Northwest Florida. The project will raise awareness of challenges and issues that communities are facing in preparing for extreme weather and climate-related hazards and assist with the implementation of solutions that save lives and protect the economy. The Dauphin Island Sea Lab, led by the Northern Gulf of Mexico Sentinel Site Cooperative, will guide a team of federal, regional, state, and local project partners charged with this task.

Project Partners: Dauphin Island Sea Lab, Northern Gulf of Mexico Sentinel Site Cooperative, NOAA Office for Coastal Management and National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, Mississippi-Alabama Sea Grant Consortium, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension, Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, Gulf of Mexico Climate Community of Practice, Louisiana Sea Grant, Escambia County, Florida

Oyster Reef Restoration in Naples Bay, Florida

Applicant: City of Naples

Recommended Federal Funding: $484,244 (FY 2017)

Match: $302,336

The City of Naples, working in partnership with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and NOAA, will restore five acres of oyster reef in three locations in Naples Bay where oysters have experienced an 80 percent decline. Reef-ball and shell-bag pod reefs will naturally protect more than 1,000 feet of mangrove shoreline from storm surge and help restore mangrove and seagrass habitat. This habitat restoration effort will also improve water quality and increase the local community’s awareness of the benefits of living shorelines.

Project Partners: Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Big Cypress Basin of the South Florida Water Management District

PACIFIC ISLANDS

Building Resilience to Coastal Hazards and Climate Change in Hawai'i

Applicant: University of Hawai'i Sea Grant College Program

Recommended Federal Funding: $845,160 (FY 2016)

Match: $422,580

People, property, and infrastructure in Hawai'i are generally concentrated in low-lying coastal areas, making local communities and economies highly vulnerable to coastal hazards, including flooding and erosion, which are expected to become more severe with climate change and sea-level rise. The University of Hawai'i Sea Grant College Program, in partnership with the State of Hawai'i and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, will work with communities in Hawai'i to develop new tools for understanding risk and vulnerability to coastal hazards and climate change and support stakeholder resilience planning, policy development, and decision-making. This partnership effort will leverage several ongoing initiatives to increase the number of communities incorporating new strategies into coastal community management and disaster recovery plans. Established partnerships with government agencies and other stakeholder groups will be used to share project results statewide and with other island communities in the Pacific region.

Project Partners: State of Hawai'i Department of Land and Natural Resources, State of Hawai'i Office of Planning, Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS), University of Hawai'i School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, and the National Disaster Preparedness Training Center

Enhancing Local Preparedness in Hawaii with Real-Time Notifications of High-Wave Flooding

Applicant: University of Hawaii

Recommended Federal Funding: $500,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $287,374

This project is helping Hawaii’s coastal communities prepare for large-wave and high-tide events that significantly damage the shore and impact the local economy. New information and real-time tools to forecast flooding on West Maui will help local officials enhance preparedness, improve response operations, and inform future land use planning scenarios. Additionally, this work will benefit lifeguards, emergency personnel, road crews, and coastal residents who will be able to better understand and plan for associated risks. The forecast system developed for this project will be replicable for other communities in Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. The University of Hawaii’s Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System (PacIOOS) is leading this partnership effort.

Project Partners: Pacific Islands Ocean Observing System, University of Hawaii School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, University of Hawaii Sea Grant College Program, County of Maui Planning Department, State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources

Restoring Hawaiian Fisheries and Coastal Communities through Fishpond Estuaries

Applicant: The Nature Conservancy

Recommended Federal Funding: $500,000 (FY 2017)

Match: $440,621

NOAA and The Nature Conservancy will restore coastal habitat and fisheries, and promote community resilience on the island of Hawaii. Through this restoration project, The Nature Conservancy and its partners will restore up to seven acres of estuarine fishpond habitat, as well as promote the exchange of knowledge among fishpond management practitioners. The project will include the rebuilding of rock walls to maintain structural integrity and improve water flow, removal of invasive species, and management of important local fish species. Nearshore ecosystems will be improved by restoring traditional fishpond, coastal estuarine, coral reef, and aquatic habitats. By helping local communities restore this important traditional aquaculture system, we are building community and cultural resilience in the region.

Project Partners: The Nature Conservancy; Kuaʻāina Ulu ʻAuamo, Hui Mālama Loko Iʻa, State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources, Hui Loko Network, U.S. Forest Service, Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail, National Park Service, Waimea Elementary School, Kamehameha Schools, Honaunau Elementary School, Hawaii Preparatory Academy, University of Hawaii at Hilom, Kanu o Ka ‘Āina, Parker School, Pu’ukohala National Historic Park, Kukio Community Association, Honoka’a High School