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Storms and associated hazards such as flooding and erosion can damage coastal property and affect beaches and dunes that provide valuable habitat for uniquely adapted species of plants and animals. This website will help you evaluate threats and identify what you can do to protect your coastal property and the natural environment.

While beaches occupy only about 14 percent, or 87 miles, of Connecticut’s coastline, the shoreline is densely populated. Hazards of living near a beach or dune system include hurricanes and nor’easters, erosion, storm surge, and flooding. Learn more about Connecticut’s beaches and dunes and determine if your beach property is eroding.

Checklist to ID coastal hazards on your property

A checklist has been developed to help you identify and rank beach and dune hazards using the resources in this guide and by conducting a field inventory of your property.
Download Beach, Dune & Coastal Flooding checklist

Dune loss at Harkness Beach. Photo: Micheal P. Grzywinski, CT DEEP

Dune loss at Harkness Beach. Photo: Micheal P. Grzywinski, CT DEEP

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Beach Hazard Response Actions at a Glance
Do nothingLow cost, easy to implementUnexpected results; uncertain futureLow$
Move landwardReduces hazard to structuresExpense, site constraints; may not address erosionLow-High $$-$$$
Elevate structureReduces hazardExpense, site constraints; may not address erosionLow-Med$-$$
Design appropriatelyReduces hazardExpense, site constraintsLow-High$$-$$$
Construct a Living ShorelineReduces wave energy, increases natural processes and wildlife/fish habitat, protects uplands, improves water qualityExpense, site constraints, regular maintenanceLow-Med$-$$
Protect, enhance, construct dunesProtects uplands, adds sandExpense, site constraints, regular maintenanceLow-Med$-$$
Erect sand fencingFencing helps to trap sandTemporary, easily knocked down by storms, restricts bird habitatLow$
Nourish the beachReuses or adds sediment, creates habitatExpense, site constraintsMed-High$$$
Repair a seawallRepairs may be covered by general permitEmergency, temporary, expensive; leads to false sense of security; can cause erosion, scouring, undermining of wall, potentially damaging to adjacent and alongshore property and habitatsLow-Med$$-$$$
Download a print version of this guide with additional detail in PDF.
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Phone: (860) 405-9106
Address: 1080 Shennecossett Road
Groton CT 06340
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