Our Goal: Keep Estuarine Shorelines Healthy & Productive
North Carolina’s 12,000 miles of estuarine shoreline provide some of the most productive habitats in the world for fish and shellfish.
Unfortunately, the erosion of these shorelines is increasing because of rising sea levels, concentrated waves from boats, more extreme storms, and poorly planned development practices. Erosion control structures like bulkheads are not as effective as living shorelines in protecting shorelines. By installing buffers using salt marshes, oyster reefs, and other natural materials, living shorelines control erosion while protecting the natural beauty and productivity of our estuaries.
The Coastal Federation remains committed to making living shorelines the go-to approach for managing shoreline erosion. We have secured public and private funding that will help us provide increased financial incentives to landowners for living shorelines.
Living shorelines offer an effective, natural way to address estuarine shoreline erosion.
Interested in building a living shoreline on your property? Please send an email to email@example.com to receive more information. There is now cost-share funding available for those interested in building a living shoreline on your property.
Our work to promote living shorelines is being advanced with a $2 million appropriation from N.C. General Assembly as well as other state and federal grants. With public and private funds, we will build over 3,000 feet of living shorelines on private properties.
By working with contractors, students, and community volunteers we’ll enhance at least 400 feet of existing living shoreline at Jockey’s Ridge State Park; build an additional 200 feet of living shoreline at Carteret County’s future boat ramp location in Ocean; construct 800 feet and design and permit another 845 feet of living shorelines along NC Hwy 24 in Cedar Point and Swansboro.
We’ll also design, permit and begin the construction of 1,667 feet of living shoreline at MCAS Cherry Point and 2,408 feet of living shoreline at Fort Macon State Park. We plan to build 60 feet of living shoreline at Topsail Beach and begin construction of five acres of oyster, living shoreline, and salt marsh; and 13 acres of tidal creek and marsh at Carolina Beach State Park. In addition, we will secure funding and permits for 150 feet of demonstration living shoreline using oyster castles and OysterCatcher™ materials, and maintain 1,860 feet of existing living shoreline at Morris Landing.
We continue to test more environmentally acceptable materials for living shoreline construction, provide continuing education for public officials, contractors, and real estate professionals and work with researchers to increase public understanding of the value of living shorelines.
feet of living shorelines installed
living shoreline projects
wetland grasses planted
Project summaries from the blog:
Living Shorelines Academy
The Living Shorelines Academy was established to increase the abundance of coastal wetlands, advance the policy, science and practice of living shorelines, and enhance collaboration among governmental and private stakeholders. It is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and is a product of collaboration between Restore America’s Estuaries and the North Carolina Coastal Federation — and their many partners.
The Academy provides training modules, research and reports, a database of existing living shoreline projects, a directory of professionals, and a forum.
Other resources from around the web:
- List of Marsh Grass Suppliers from N.C. Sea Grant
- Living Shoreline Suitability Tool — The Nature Conservancy has partnered with scientists at NOAA’s Beaufort Lab to create this new application by bringing in their research on shorelines in the southern Pamlico, Core, and Bogue sounds and the New River Estuary so that managers and residents can identify where to apply more natural techniques to stabilize their shores. This tool identifies where shoreline wave energy conditions are suitable to ensure successful living shoreline projects.
- “From Gray To Green: Replacing A Bulkhead With A Living Shoreline At A High-Energy Riverine Site” — NOAA Office for Coastal Management
- Green Infrastructure Benefits — NOAA Office for Coastal Management
- Coastal Blue Carbon as an Incentive for Coastal Conservation, Restoration and Management: A Template for Understanding Options
You can help make a difference for our coast—one living shoreline at a time!