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Sea Grant shares lessons learned from coastal storms to help communities

Sea Grant works with coastal communities across the U.S., Puerto Rico and Guam to improve community resilience to coastal storms. Specifically, Sea Grant engages in vulnerability assessments, resilience planning and social science initiatives to learn from previous storms and better prepare for future storms. Sea Grant develops and shares preparation and recovery resources for communities and individuals. All of these projects are part of a strategic focus area to ensure resilient communities and economies across the Sea Grant network. Some of the resources Sea Grant has developed are listed below. 


When tropical storms hit coastal communities, Sea Grant programs help with response, recovery and rebuilding efforts. Below are selected stories of Sea Grant’s work during past storm events.

General Hurricane Resources

Florida Sea Grant

Hawai‘i Sea Grant

Louisiana Sea Grant

New York Sea Grant

Puerto Rico Sea Grant

South Carolina Sea Grant

Texas Sea Grant

Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria

The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season was among the top seven most intense ever recorded. Sea Grant programs across the Southeast, Gulf, and Caribbean worked with local communities to help respond, recover and rebuild from these historic storms.

Florida Sea Grant:
Florida Sea Grant Helped Save Keys Lobster Industry Nearly $4 million After Hurricane Irma
Are You Covered by Flood Insurance? Now’s the Time to Find Out

Georgia Sea Grant: Georgia Sea Grant assists in recovery and response to Hurricane Irma

Texas Sea Grant:
Texas Shores Spring 2018 – Hurricane Harvey
Texas Sea Grant Study Shows True Destruction of Hurricane Harvey
Community fishing project for kids back on after Hurricane Harvey
Homeowner’s Handbook available to help Texans prepare for next storm
Sea Grant agent, business team to rescue vessels that were damaged by Harvey

Hurricane Matthew

In October 2016, Hurricane Matthew caused over $10 billion in damage to the Southeast coast, with historic levels of river flooding in eastern North Carolina. Following the storm, Sea Grant programs led local efforts to learn how people make decisions and receive information as well as efforts to assist with recovery and planning.

Georgia Sea Grant: Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant help coastal communities lower flood insurance rates

North Carolina Sea Grant:
Identifying Innovative Recovery Strategies
Going with the Flow: Evaluating Flood Mitigation of the Cashie River

South Carolina Sea Grant: Communities Under Water: Lessons Learned from Extreme Floods

Superstorm Sandy

Connecticut, New Jersey and New York Sea Grant Sea Grant programs coordinated 10 social science research projects to understand how people receive information before, during and after a storm as well as the factors that go into their decisions to evacuate or prepare in place. The initiative, called the Coastal Storm Awareness Program, had several key findings that are now being shared with emergency management officials across the country by Sea Grant extension specialists.

Connecticut Sea Grant: Sea Grant Coastal Storms Awareness Program findings summary (PDF)
New Jersey Sea Grant: Coastal Storm Awareness Program homepage
New York Sea Grant: Superstorm Sandy News and Media Archives

Hurricane Katrina

Over a decade after the devastating storm, Sea Grant programs in the Gulf and Southeast are continuing to track impacts and share lessons learned to prepare residents for and mitigate impacts of future storms.

Louisiana Sea Grant: Katrina Response, Recovery, and Rebuilding Archives
Mississippi recreational and commercial fishing sectors: A decade after Hurricane Katrina
On the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, high water markers installed to promote storm surge awareness
North Carolina: Lessons from Katrina

Other National Resources

National Hurricane Center

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) National Preparedness Resource Library

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Images of Sea Grant's work in research, education and extension provided by (from left to right) Wisconsin, Guam and Florida Sea Grant programs. Design by Hallee Meltzer | National Sea Grant Office.

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