The Work of the Coastal Federation Supports a Strong Coastal Economy

The Coastal Federation works at the grassroots level to engage people from all walks of life in ensuring a healthy future for our coast. Much of that work focuses on protecting and restoring coastal habitats and water quality. The federation seeks to both lead by example—implementing on-the-ground demonstrations of the practices we espouse—and to educate and empower others to be effective stewards of the coast.

Those on-the-ground demonstration projects include stormwater retrofits, living shorelines, large-scale wetland restoration projects, oyster reef restoration projects, and more. Over the years, the federation has restored miles of living shorelines, thousands of acres of wetlands, and hundreds of acres of oyster reef. Individual projects can be quite large as well, and require significant funding to implement.

The vast majority of that funding comes from state and federal grants that the federation wins through a competitive process. The direct expenses from these projects go into the local coastal economy, supporting workers such as truck drivers, barge operators, marine contractors, plant nurseries, civil engineers, and more. This amounts to millions of dollars for our coastal economy each year, as shown in the table below.

Support to the community from direct expenses from projects restoring coastal habitat and water quality (per audited financial statements).

YearAmount
2019 $2,471,934
2018$3,413,310
2017$2,550,147
2016$1,800,337
2015$1,894,955

Through our on-the-ground projects, the Coastal Federation directly supports the coastal economy. In addition to these direct benefits, projects restoring coastal habitats and water quality also indirectly benefit the coastal economy by supporting critical industries that rely on a healthy coast, including tourism and fishing.

The Coastal Federation is proud to support a strong coastal economy in addition to a healthy coastal environment.

The Coastal Investments Program

In 2020, the Coastal Federation launched the Coastal Investments Program to support our efforts to pursue federal and state grants for on-the-ground coastal protection and restoration projects—projects that restore our coast and support our economy by employing local workers. Thanks to the support of people like you, this program secured over $14 million in grant funding in 2020. Most of these funds will pass through the federation to restore habitat and water quality over the following three to five years.

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Report by RTI International

In 2015, RTI International examined the economic effects on local economies of four Coastal Federation restoration projects. The report found:

An $8 million investment led to:

  • 116 temporary jobs
  • $13.8 million in coastal revenue
  • $4.1 million in coastal payroll

Learn more about this study HERE

Read the RTI International Report HERE


Strategic Plan

In 2017, the Coastal Federation released a Strategic Plan for Creating a Robust Coastal Economy with Coastal Restoration.

Learn more

Read the Plan

Learn more about the 2017 Sound Economic Development Summit and view presentations