Working in a Coastal Zone

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Did you know that combined, the states of Region III cover approximately 10,000 miles of coastline? In Maryland, two-thirds of the land and 70% of its residents live in a coastal zone. In Virginia, only 29% of the land falls under coastal management, but this includes more than 60% of its population! Even Pennsylvania has two coastal areas, one around Philadelphia, where the Delaware Estuary lies, and one in Erie County along the Lake Erie coastline. Whether you can see the beach or water from your project area or not, you may fall under your state’s coastal zone management plan. When working on or near coastlines, beaches, islands, salt marshes, or any transitional or intertidal areas, special care must be taken to preserve this delicate and valuable environment. Your state has determined a management plan for each area. Projects within coastal areas are subject to approval and permits from State and Federal agencies, and require a review to ensure consistency with the state plan. Before beginning any work, any actions must be coordinated with coastal management agencies to determine the impact of the project. The following information should be included as a minimum with any project proposal:

  • Detailed maps, studies, and reports documenting project scope and surrounding areas. Include any land extending inward to the extent necessary to control shorelines.
  • Documentation of compliance and consistency with state coastal management programs and plans.
  • Documentation of coordination with state and federal agencies.

For further information and assistance in applying for project approval, contact the FEMA Disaster Field Office.

Related Information

List of specific regional or state contacts

Last Updated: 
06/14/2012 - 19:54