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

Project Summary

New England has a varied coastline and dually varied implementation of living shoreline approaches. This project focused on developing related tools and resources for municipalities and coastal managers to increase their resilience to erosion, flooding, and severe storm impacts.

CT DEEP and UConn CIRCA worked in collaboration with New England state members of the Northeast Regional Ocean Council (NROC) to analyze living shoreline strategies in Connecticut and the broader Northeast region. This team developed a “state-of-the-practice” report, living shoreline profile fact sheets, and other products to increase public awareness of living shorelines and green infrastructure approaches.  Additionally, across the states, community-based training programs and workshops were held.  In order to support the use of living shorelines, state and federal regulatory issues were identified and efforts are being made to address these accordingly through NROC.


These new living shoreline products are meant to serve as a regional resource and do not replace Connecticut-specific guidance and regulation. Contact CT DEEP for regulatory guidance on living shorelines.

Living Shorelines in New England: State of the Practice

NROC Living Shorelines Profile Pages

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CIRCA and NOAA partnered on May 23, 2017 to present a Green Infrastructure for Coastal Resilience Training. Training staff from NOAA and CIRCA introduced participants to fundamental green infrastructure concepts and practices that can play a critical role in making coastal communities more resilient to natural hazards. The agenda also featured green infrastructure projects from CIRCA grantees in Stratford and MetroCOG as well as presentations from New Haven, Eastern CT Conservation District, and the University of Connecticut Center for Land Use Education and Research. You will find the presentations from this training in the links below.

Intro Green Infrastructure – NOAA

Community Benefits of Land Restoration – MetroCOG

Designing for the Future – City of New Haven

Green Infrastructure at the Local Community – ECCD

Green Infrastructure LID in CT – UConn CLEAR

Project Description

In the Northeastern United States, 66% of the region’s population lives on the shoreline, and coastal communities account for a significant amount of each states’ gross domestic product.  As the frequency of powerful storms increase due to climate change, so does the risk of devastation from flooding and storm surges.  In order to grow resiliency to natural disasters in the Northeast region, CIRCA and CTDEEP collaborated with state agencies and organizations to complete two project objectives: (1) gain a better understanding of the locations and magnitudes of coastal storm impacts, and (2) gain increased awareness and implement sustainable, nature-based green infrastructure management approaches.  The team addressed priority data and capacity gaps, developed and increased access to tools for more informed decision making, worked to improve communications and education to support the application of sustainable shoreline management responses.

Completion Date: May 2018

Funding for this project is provided by the NOAA Regional Coastal Resilience Grants under the NOAA Office for Coastal Management.

Project Team

Topic Areas