Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Recovery Activities

Assessment of Coastal Impacts in Florida and Puerto Rico

During Hurricanes Irma and Maria, much of Florida and Puerto Rico experienced significant impacts to beaches, dunes, and coral reefs. Extensive erosion, flooding, and coral losses result in increased immediate and long-term hazards to natural and populated shorelines, putting critical infrastructure at risk to future flooding and erosion and causing economic losses.


  • Post-storm repair and recovery investments that focus on immediate- and long-term cumulative impacts will benefit from updated and expanded assessments of coastal vulnerability to storms.
  • USGS will provide information that supports real-time hazard guidance during storms, emergency preparedness, and long-term management of existing or proposed engineering, infrastructure, and coastal protection systems.
  • Assessment of coastal hazards in Florida and Puerto Rico identify the vulnerability of sandy and reef-fronted coastlines to erosion and flooding during storms.


Elevated water levels and high waves overtopped the dunes at Sombrero Beach

Elevated water levels and high waves overtopped the dunes at Sombrero Beach in Marathon Key causing sand to overwash, covering the road. 

(Public domain.)

Additional Contacts:

Kara Doran - storm-induced coastal change 

Emily Himmelstoss - long-term coastal change

Kim Yates - Coral reef loss

Curt Storlazzi - vulnerability of coral-fronted coasts


Hilary Stockdon

Science Advisor for Coastal Change Hazards
Coastal and Marine Hazards and Resources Program
Phone: 727-483-2870