Defending Our Coasts

Flooded road with "high water" sign

Communities and businesses around the country are vulnerable to natural disasters and long-term adverse environmental changes. Hurricanes, floods, and other weather events can have devastating effects on coastal areas. Improving the health and safety of these areas makes our nation stronger and our economy more secure.

NOAA Fisheries takes a comprehensive approach to strengthening the nation’s coastal communities, economies, and environments. We provide advice and resources for communities to more easily recover from or adapt to extreme weather or long-term changes in environmental conditions.

Habitat restoration builds resilience in communities and ecosystems. Our investment in projects such as dam removals and floodplain restoration can help coastal areas by:

  • Eliminating safety risks associated with hazardous structures like historic dams.

  • Protecting shorelines from erosion and changing environmental conditions like sea-level rise.

  • Reducing flooding due to more frequent storms by creating wetlands to store flood waters or reduce wave action.

Since 2015, we have invested nearly $15 million in these types of projects.

In addition to strengthening coastal ecosystems, these projects support sustainable fisheries. They also play an important role in supporting recovery and conservation of protected species and their habitats.