Coastal Flooding & Waves Projects & Products

CIRCA works to enhance coastal resilience to coastal flooding and waves in Connecticut. Coastal flooding is caused by waves, storm surge, and high tide, particularly with increased sea levels. In coastal areas where there are also rivers, rainfall contributes to coastal flooding as well. Waves also contribute to shoreline erosion and information on waves is important for designing living shorelines.

Below is a brief summary description of our current Coastal Flooding and Waves projects. Click the Learn More button to read the detailed project description, or use the left navigation.


Advancing High Resolution Coastal Forecasting & Living Shorelines Approaches in the Northeast

The Advancing High Resolution Coastal Forecasting and Living Shorelines Approaches in the Northeast advances northeast regional forecasting for inundation from storms under future sea level rise scenarios and identifies policy barriers and potential solutions for the use of living shorelines in the northeast.

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Lyme Coastal Wet Lands

How Will Sea Level Rise-Driven Shifts in Wetland Vegetation Alter Ecosystem Services?

This project examines how sea level rise (SLR) - induced shifts in vegetation will mediate ecosystem service provision by LIS coastal wetlands.

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Jarvis Creek Sea Level & Flooding Variability

The Jarvis Creek Sea Level and Flooding Variability study in Branford, CT determined how downstream flood prevention activities affect areas upstream in terms of flooding frequency. The Institute provided a report.pdf with policy directions for the DEEP Office of Long Sound Programs for future consideration of similar upstream impacts.

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Municipal Resilience Planning Assistance for Sea Level Rise, Coastal Flooding, Wastewater Treatment Infrastructure, & Policy

The Municipal Resilience Planning Assistance for Sea Level Rise, Coastal Flooding, Wastewater Treatment Infrastructure, and Policy project provides information for wastewater system vulnerability assessments, combined river and coastal flooding for pilot sites, and policy options for priority resilience projects for towns in the Sandy-impacted counties.

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Storm Damage

Resilient Coastal Communities under Wind & Flood Hazards

The Resilient Coastal Communities under Wind and Flood Hazards project will evaluate and compare trade-offs in residential home building designs to reduce risk of wind and flood damage in order to reduce coastal community vulnerabilities. The towns of Fairfield and Milford are participating in the study.

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Road Flooding in Coastal Connecticut

The coastline of Connecticut is characterized by numerous inlets where the rivers and streams carrying runoff from land towards the ocean and the saline tidal waters of Long Island Sound intrude into the channels.

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Stratford Point Living Shoreline: Restoring Coastal Habitats to Maintain Resiliency and Function

Led by researchers at Sacred Heart University, this project expands an existing living shoreline project at Stratford Point, Fairfield County, Connecticut. On-going coastal restoration efforts and research at the site consist of an artificial reef, smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) marsh, high marsh, coastal dune and upland woody/grassland mosaics.

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Waves in Long Island Sound and Living Shorelines Site Suitability Tool: NOAA CREST Project

The NOAA CREST project has significant wave heights for different return periods for all of Long Island Sound, measurements of waves in Old Saybrook and New Haven harbors, a review of design guidelines and tools for site assessment of living shorelines. This information is summarized in an online map viewer.

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Western Connecticut Council of Governments – Regional CRS Program

In order to stem the high cost of flooding to home and business owners, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) offers flood insurance in communities that comply with basic floodplain management standards through the National Flood Insurance Program. Communities may choose to enter into the National Flood Insurance Program’s Community Rating System (CRS) in order to reduce the cost of flood insurance premiums for their property owners. Communities participating in the CRS Program go above and beyond the minimum standards and, depending on their level of mitigation efforts, can garner insurance premium reductions from 5-45%.

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