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Social and Economic Benefits of Coral Reef Restoration in Florida, 1

Detailed Description

Report Summary

The Social and Economic Benefits of Coral Reef Restoration in Florida

Targeted restoration of reef natural infrastructure can protect U.S. people and property from significant risk of future flooding.

Key Points

  • The social and economic benefits of potential reef restoration scenarios, which varied in restored reef height and width, were assessed across South Florida.
  • Reef restoration in Florida could prevent over $232 million in economic damages annually.
  • Restoration benefits differed by site, with high benefits for restoration in shallow water, close to shore, and near areas with more people and property. There were few benefits if reef restoration were done in deep water and far offshore.

This study provides the first regional-scale quantification of expected flood protection benefits provided by coral reef restoration.

Risk Reduction Benefits of Reef Restoration. The full height of the bars indicates current expected flood risk in the 100-year floodplain in Miami, Florida. The blue bar tops indicate the risk that could be reduced with reef restoration; their height and color represent the expected benefit from restoration per 100,000 m2 (hexagon max width = 392 m). Residual risk remains even after reef restoration. The orange line offshore indicates the location of potential reef restoration assessed in the models. The blue polygons offshore represent the extent of current reef habitats.

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