Beach News

Overview


Beach News is a courtesy service provided by the Carteret County Shore Protection Office that furnishes on-line news relevant to the beaches of North Carolina with special emphasis to Carteret County.  Please visit http://www.carteretcountync.gov/list.aspx if you wish to be added to or removed from the "Beach News" distribution list.   Recent "Beach News" is provided below.


BEACH NEWS for 2021

11/10/2021
Wrightsville Beach wants Masonboro Inlet sand for nourishment. Feds say birds need it more
Mayor: Sand dredging set to start soon in Holden Beach 
https://www.wwaytv3.com/2021/10/28/mayor-sand-dredging-set-to-start-soon-in-holden-beach/

Emerald Isle board to consider grant application for boat channel dredging
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_3b5c1178-40ab-11ec-9633-8b51340edfd1.html

Storm system brings wind and waves
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/11/10/storm-system-brings-wind-and-waves/

Morehead City to proceed with grant application to study shoreline erosion on Sugarloaf Island
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_7ab4cfce-40e0-11ec-b480-af8a44def86d.html

Carteret County Beach Commission October Meeting Agenda
November 16, 2021; 11:30
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_11162021-1235

11/1/2021
Long-awaited Hatteras Inlet realignment proposal published Army Corps of Engineers
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/10/31/long-awaited-hatteras-inlet-realignment-proposal-published-army-corps-of-engineers/ 

Biden admin to uproot Trump 'critical habitat' policies
BY: MICHAEL DOYLE, 10/26/2021
GREENWIRE | The Biden administration today moved to rescind Trump administration policies that crimped the designation of critical habitat to protect threatened or endangered species.  In a pair of long-anticipated moves, the Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries proposed getting rid of a Trump-era definition of critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act. FWS is also proposing to end a policy that made it easier to exclude territory.Taken together, the two proposed rule changes could significantly alter the much-litigated ESA landscape and, supporters say, enhance conservation and recovery of vulnerable animals or plants.  They will also revive the debate over practical consequences and regulatory nuts and bolts that have shadowed the ESA since the day it became law in 1973 (Greenwire, Oct. 19).
“The Endangered Species Act is one of the most important conservation tools in America and provides a safety net for species that are at risk of going extinct,” said Assistant Interior Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Shannon Estenoz.  Estenoz added that “if finalized, today’s proposed actions will bring the implementation of the Act back into alignment with its original intent and purpose — protecting and recovering America’s biological heritage for future generations.”  
The proposed changes would reverse ESA moves made in December 2020, during the final weeks of the Trump administration.  Under the ESA, critical habitat is considered "essential for the conservation of the species."  Federal agencies that authorize, fund or carry out an action on designated land must first consult with FWS to ensure it is not likely to destroy or damage a critical habitat. This can kick in, for instance, when the Forest Service is considering a timber permit or the Bureau of Reclamation is renewing an irrigation water contract.  The ESA further states that critical habitat is to be designated "on the basis of the best scientific data available and after taking into consideration the economic impact, the impact on national security, and any other relevant impact."  Last week, for instance, the Fish and Wildlife Service proposed designating more than 1.4 million acres in Oregon and California as critical habitat for a population of the Pacific marten, a
vulnerable forest-dwelling mammal. Most of the designated habitat is owned by the federal government (Greenwire, Oct. 22).
Some of the most sprawling designations have provoked consternation among natural resource industry interests, such as the evergreen debate over how many million acres should be designated for the northern spotted owl.  FWS has been reconsidering the Trump administration's reduction of the owl's critical habitat from 9.6 million acres to 6.1 million acres.  One of the December 2020 rule changes revised the process for considering critical habitat exclusions.   The law allows exclusion of areas if "the benefits of such exclusion outweigh the benefits of specifying such area as part of the critical habitat," unless the exclusion "will result in the extinction of the species concerned."
The Trump-era regulations imposed last December allowed that "other relevant impacts" may be considered, including public health and safety, risk of wildfires, or pest and invasive species management (Greenwire, Dec. 17, 2020).  Trump's FWS Director Aurelia Skipwith said at the time that "in addition to improving consistency and predictability for stakeholders, these regulations will stimulate more effective conservation on the ground."  Now, the agency says it has “re-evaluated this rule and concludes that the conservation purposes of the ESA are better met by resuming its previous approach to exclusions.”  “We’re relieved that the Biden administration has taken this important step toward restoring critical protections for imperiled species,” said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “There’s just no way to save animals and plants from extinction without safeguarding the places they need to live.”
A second December 2020 rule change established for both FWS and NOAA Fisheries a joint regulatory definition of the term "habitat" under the ESA.  The agencies under the Biden administration have concluded that whether a certain area qualifies as habitat for a species should instead be made on a case-by-case basis. The agencies reason that the Trump administration’s definition excluded from consideration degraded areas that do not currently support species but that could still be essential for conservation of the species.  “If finalized, today’s proposed action of rescinding the regulatory definition of habitat will improve our ability to use the tool of critical habitat designation appropriately and effectively to conserve listed species as envisioned in the statute,” said Janet Coit, the assistant administrator for NOAA Fisheries.  Earthjustice, on behalf of multiple environmental groups, filed three lawsuits against the Trump administration for its ESA rollbacks. One is still being litigated, and two are stayed pending completion of the rulemakings announced today.  Jonathan Wood, vice president of the Montana-based Property and Environment Research Center, said, “While the 2020 rules were not perfect, axing them without consideration of their benefits or how they could be improved serves only to generate conflict and litigation.”


FEMA flood program slammed as misguided, regressive
BY: THOMAS FRANK, 11/01/2021
CLIMATEWIRE | Environmental officials and advocates are urging the Federal Emergency Management Agency to abolish or overhaul a program that gives millions of people discounts on flood insurance rates, saying the program is unfair and encourages development in flood zones.  The groups are targeting FEMA’s Community Rating System, which discounts flood insurance premiums on property located in communities that take flood mitigation steps such as preserving open space and requiring buildings to be elevated above flood level.  The program encourages communities to build their resilience to flooding, offering insurance discounts as a reward for flood mitigation policies.
But several officials and advocates said in recent comments to FEMA that the discounts are unfair and unwise and should be stopped or drastically revised.  The discount program “only further incentivizes bad development,” the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources told FEMA in response to the federal agency’s request for suggestions on improving the rating system.  Echoing the concern, the Association of State Floodplain Management told FEMA that discounting flood insurance premiums “is a perverse incentive which encourages development in the high flood risk area.”  Others told FEMA the discounts are unfair because they are given largely to property owners in affluent communities and force people in lower-income areas to pay higher insurance rates.  “The entire program is regressive,” Douglas County, Kan., wrote to FEMA.

The comments mark the broadest attack on the Community Rating System — known as the CRS — which researchers and government auditors have long criticized as so complex that only well-funded communities can participate.  FEMA invited the public to suggest how to make the CRS more effective and accessible to communities with large numbers of low-income or minority homeowners. FEMA is undertaking broad reviews of several programs that provide insurance and disaster aid, largely in response to President Biden’s orders to make the fight against climate change more equitable.
The CRS gives discounts to 3.5 million of the 5 million people who buy flood coverage through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program. Counties and municipalities earn the discounts for their residents by implementing flood mitigation steps approved by FEMA.  The discounts range from 5 percent to 45 percent depending on how many mitigation points a community wins from FEMA. The average discount is 13 percent, which cuts about $90 from the cost of a typical $700 flood insurance premium.  But the money for the discounts comes from the 1.5 million policyholders who own property in communities that haven’t won any mitigation points. Those policyholders pay what is in effect a surcharge that adds 15 percent to the cost of their premiums.
Several groups said the 15 percent charge is unfair because the money comes mostly from people in communities that lack the resources to undertake flood mitigation or submit a package to FEMA documenting their mitigation steps.  “This is an unfair expense for policyholders in non-participating communities, many of which are low-capacity communities that lack the resources to participate” in the CRS, the New York State Floodplain and Stormwater Managers Association told FEMA.
The Coastal Flood Resilience Project, which is an environmental coalition, told FEMA it should lobby Congress to shift the cost of the insurance discounts to federal taxpayers instead of other ratepayers.  “All taxpayers benefit from the adoption of flood resilience measures,” the project said. “Direct funding of the CRS is a good investment for the federal government as well as an effective policy for reducing the inequities in the current system.”  Other groups said FEMA should get rid of the insurance discounts and provide rewards that benefit an entire community instead of just flood insurance policyholders.  “CRS credits should be at least shared with the community, if not totally provided to the community instead of the policy holder,” the Association of State Floodplain Management told FEMA. “Policy holders are not the ones doing the work to reduce risk, the community is.”
FEMA received 211 comments in response to its call for input. Many commenters complained about the difficulty of the CRS program and following the 641-page manual. Douglas County said the cost of complying with the program exceeded the savings its residents earned through lower insurance premiums.  The Pennsylvania Association of Floodplain Managers said one problem with the CRS is the program’s name, which is “intimidating” and “a turnoff.”  What community wants to be rated by the federal government in the first place?” the association told FEMA.  A name such as the Comprehensive Resilience System or Resilience Enhancement Program “gives a higher purpose to the program,” the association added.


10/27/2021
Beach commission talks solutions, hears from experts on invasive vine along Bogue Banks dunes
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_033f4bb2-3664-11ec-b78b-8b98b0d6ffe6.html

Nourishment funds now secured for 2 New Hanover towns
https://coastalreview.org/2021/10/nourishment-funds-now-secured-for-2-new-hanover-towns/ 

Biden admin to uproot Trump 'critical habitat' policies
BY: MICHAEL DOYLE, 10/26/2021
GREENWIRE | The Biden administration today moved to rescind Trump administration policies that crimped the designation of critical habitat to protect threatened or endangered species.  In a pair of long-anticipated moves, the Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries proposed getting rid of a Trump-era definition of critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act. FWS is also proposing to end a policy that made it easier to exclude territory.Taken together, the two proposed rule changes could significantly alter the much-litigated ESA landscape and, supporters say, enhance conservation and recovery of vulnerable animals or plants.  They will also revive the debate over practical consequences and regulatory nuts and bolts that have shadowed the ESA since the day it became law in 1973 (Greenwire, Oct. 19).
“The Endangered Species Act is one of the most important conservation tools in America and provides a safety net for species that are at risk of going extinct,” said Assistant Interior Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Shannon Estenoz.  Estenoz added that “if finalized, today’s proposed actions will bring the implementation of the Act back into alignment with its original intent and purpose — protecting and recovering America’s biological heritage for future generations.”  
The proposed changes would reverse ESA moves made in December 2020, during the final weeks of the Trump administration.  Under the ESA, critical habitat is considered "essential for the conservation of the species."  Federal agencies that authorize, fund or carry out an action on designated land must first consult with FWS to ensure it is not likely to destroy or damage a critical habitat. This can kick in, for instance, when the Forest Service is considering a timber permit or the Bureau of Reclamation is renewing an irrigation water contract.  The ESA further states that critical habitat is to be designated "on the basis of the best scientific data available and after taking into consideration the economic impact, the impact on national security, and any other relevant impact."  Last week, for instance, the Fish and Wildlife Service proposed designating more than 1.4 million acres in Oregon and California as critical habitat for a population of the Pacific marten, a vulnerable forest-dwelling mammal. Most of the designated habitat is owned by the federal government (Greenwire, Oct. 22).
Some of the most sprawling designations have provoked consternation among natural resource industry interests, such as the evergreen debate over how many million acres should be designated for the northern spotted owl.  FWS has been reconsidering the Trump administration's reduction of the owl's critical habitat from 9.6 million acres to 6.1 million acres.  One of the December 2020 rule changes revised the process for considering critical habitat exclusions.   The law allows exclusion of areas if "the benefits of such exclusion outweigh the benefits of specifying such area as part of the critical habitat," unless the exclusion "will result in the extinction of the species concerned."
The Trump-era regulations imposed last December allowed that "other relevant impacts" may be considered, including public health and safety, risk of wildfires, or pest and invasive species management (Greenwire, Dec. 17, 2020).  Trump's FWS Director Aurelia Skipwith said at the time that "in addition to improving consistency and predictability for stakeholders, these regulations will stimulate more effective conservation on the ground."  Now, the agency says it has “re-evaluated this rule and concludes that the conservation purposes of the ESA are better met by resuming its previous approach to exclusions.”  “We’re relieved that the Biden administration has taken this important step toward restoring critical protections for imperiled species,” said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “There’s just no way to save animals and plants from extinction without safeguarding the places they need to live.”
A second December 2020 rule change established for both FWS and NOAA Fisheries a joint regulatory definition of the term "habitat" under the ESA.  The agencies under the Biden administration have concluded that whether a certain area qualifies as habitat for a species should instead be made on a case-by-case basis. The agencies reason that the Trump administration’s definition excluded from consideration degraded areas that do not currently support species but that could still be essential for conservation of the species.  “If finalized, today’s proposed action of rescinding the regulatory definition of habitat will improve our ability to use the tool of critical habitat designation appropriately and effectively to conserve listed species as envisioned in the statute,” said Janet Coit, the assistant administrator for NOAA Fisheries.  Earthjustice, on behalf of multiple environmental groups, filed three lawsuits against the Trump administration for its ESA rollbacks. One is still being litigated, and two are stayed pending completion of the rulemakings announced today.  Jonathan Wood, vice president of the Montana-based Property and Environment Research Center, said, “While the 2020 rules were not perfect, axing them without consideration of their benefits or how they could be improved serves only to generate conflict and litigation.”


10/25/2021
Group asks court to block groin project during permit appeal (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/group-asks-court-to-block-groin-project-during-permit-appeal/ 

Public invited to weigh in on the future of Hatteras Inlet dredging, and Rollinson Channel Realignment
‘The go-to person’ for nourishment, dredging: Carteret officials credit Rudolph for 20 years of coastal progress
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_70f6090e-327f-11ec-a510-9f02aa5bee4d.html

‘Ugly’ mud may hold key to saving vital ecosystems off Georgia, Carolinas coastlines 
https://www.islandpacket.com/news/weather-news/article254872837.html

Caswell: sand removal from shoals is a concern
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_61ebc57e-31db-11ec-9617-ef833897d883.html

10/20/2021
Carteret County Beach Commission October Meeting Agenda
October 25, 2021; 14:00
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_10252021-1227 

Beach renourishment fix puts Pleasure Island back on track, leaves Wrightsville Beach behind
https://portcitydaily.com/wrightsville-beach/2021/10/19/beach-renourishment-carolina-wrightsville-biden/

'Playing by a different set of rules': Lawsuit filed against Wrightsville Beach developers

National Flood Insurance Program Risk Rating 2.0: Frequently Asked Questions
https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IN/IN11777

EDITORIAL: ‘Rudi’ Rudolph nourished success
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/opinions/editorials/article_08fbb196-310d-11ec-854a-87f36f6f9967.html

10/19/2021
Emerald Isle board OKs $250K dune vegetation project for spring
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_953f2fd4-2d0c-11ec-8021-0315b7b86410.html 

Rising seas and retreating shores: A look at battling beach erosion
https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2021/10/18/rising-seas--retreating-shores

Beach renourishment funds approved for Carolina Beach, Kure Beach
https://www.wect.com/2021/10/18/beach-renourishment-funds-approved-carolina-beach-kure-beach/ 

New FEMA flood insurance system means bigger local premiums
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/10/18/i-think-we-are-going-to-see-increases-here/

10/18/2021
Ocean Isle Beach terminal groin, sand projects set to begin
https://coastalreview.org/2021/10/ocean-isle-beach-terminal-groin-sand-projects-set-to-begin/ 

‘A long term dream:’ Ocean Isle Beach poised to begin construction on terminal groin after lobbying, lengthy legal battles
For NC12 Task Force, one big challenge is Ocracoke South Ferry Terminal
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/10/16/for-nc12-task-force-one-big-challenge-is-ocracoke-south-ferry-terminal/

Rudolph resigns from Carteret County Shore Protection Office in pursuit of ‘new opportunities and challenges’
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_24340bee-3021-11ec-93cf-eb6f93afed4e.html

10/14/2021
Changes to land from coastal storms can enhance habitat 
https://coastalreview.org/2021/10/changes-to-land-from-coastal-storms-can-enhance-habitat/ 

Oak Island council OKs $17.5-million sand contract
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_2c0f84e8-2c65-11ec-8628-6732b2831755.html 

PUBLIC NOTICE: FEMA Seeking Public Input Regarding; (1) Revising the National Flood Insurance Program's (NFIP) floodplain management standards, and (2) How the NFIP can better promote protection threatened and endangered species.

10/12/2021
Louisiana's only glass recycling facility wants its 'sand' to help the coast. This $700K grant will help.
https://www.nola.com/news/environment/article_137c6300-277a-11ec-998d-ebede0775f47.html

Coastland Times: NC 12 group looks at Avon-Buxton, meeting again Thursday
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/10/10/nc-12-group-looks-at-avon-buxton-meeting-again-thursday/

Pawleys Island leaders hoping to dredge inlets due to sand, silt build-up
https://www.wmbfnews.com/2021/10/08/pawleys-island-leaders-hoping-dredge-inlets-due-sand-silt-build-up/

Greens seek big spending on Endangered Species Act listings
By MANUEL QUIÑONES, 10/12/2021, E&E DAILY
Dozens of environmental and conservation groups are calling on the Biden administration to dramatically increase its request for implementing the Endangered Species Act in the fiscal 2023 budget proposal.  Led by the Center for Biological Diversity, the groups' letter to the Office of Management and Budget follows news the Fish and Wildlife Service was moving to delist numerous species because they had gone extinct (Greenwire, Sept. 29).  "The U.S. has one of the most powerful tools to end extinction — the Endangered Species Act — yet the Act has been chronically underfunded for decades," said the letter. "This lack of funding has resulted in many animals and plants waiting over a decade to receive safeguards."  The groups — also including the Natural Resources Defense Council, Defenders of Wildlife, Earthjustice and the Humane Society of the United States — want the White House to ask for $63.7 million for ESA listings.  The House's Interior-Environment spending legislation for fiscal 2022 includes just over $20 million for Endangered Species Act listing activities, according to the bill report.  Last month, environmental activists gathered outside the office of House Appropriations Chair Rosa DeLauro (D) in Connecticut to call for higher funding to implement the statute.


10/8/2021
NEWS RELEASE - Carteret County selected for defense grant for shoreline and infrastructure protection measures on Radio Island
Carteret County receives federal grant for Radio Island nourishment  
https://www.publicradioeast.org/post/carteret-county-receives-federal-grant-radio-island-nourishment 

NEWS RELEASE - Ocean Isle Beach coastal storm risk management contract awarded

Dredging to start at Ocean Isle Beach in November
https://www.wect.com/2021/10/07/dredging-start-ocean-isle-beach-november/

10/7/2021
Shore Protection Office reports Bogue Inlet dredging work nears conclusion
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_e834cd6a-22ea-11ec-a556-fba5bdb9d103.html 

Who should pay for beach nourishment? Oak Island debates
https://www.starnewsonline.com/story/news/2021/10/05/oak-island-paid-parking-discussed-cover-beach-nourishment-costs/5783224001/

If you have flood insurance, the price is likely going up. What that means in NC

10/1/2021
DRONE VIDEO - Bogue Inlet Sidecast Dredging Event (Fall 2021)
https://youtu.be/EBQF9TOxCAA 

Ruling clears way for DeBordieu to start groin project
https://coastalobserver.com/ruling-clears-way-for-debordieu-to-start-beach-project/

N.C. State study examines long-term landscape changes after major storms
https://islandfreepress.org/hatteras-island-features/n-c-state-study-examines-long-term-landscape-changes-after-major-storms/

Charleston, S.C.'s $1.1B Wall Is 'Optimized' Solution to Stop Floods: Corps
https://www.enr.com/articles/52499-charleston-scs-11b-wall-is-optimized-solution-to-stop-floods-corps

9/29/2021
Carteret County secures DOD grant for east Taylor’s Creek dredging, Radio Island nourishment
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_4269f5e8-208a-11ec-a7b7-a7ebe3148ad5.html

Dare moves forward on 2022 beach nourishment
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/09/29/dare-moves-forward-on-2022-beach-nourishment/

More public sand for Jersey Shore town with access issues
https://www.registercitizen.com/news/article/More-public-sand-for-Jersey-Shore-town-with-16490575.php

Public Notice – The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from the Town of Nags Head seeking Department of the Army authorization to dredge 975,000 cubic yards of beach-quality sediments from three offshore borrow sources, and deposit the material along a 4.5-mile section of oceanfront shoreline, in the Town Nags Head, Dare County, North Carolina. 
https://saw-reg.usace.army.mil/PN/2021/SAW-2021-01908-PN.pdf 

9/24/2021
Army Corps of Engineers to begin Bogue Inlet dredge work as early as Sunday
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_e5d34e10-1cba-11ec-af9a-af87a4ed7e14.html

SC Ports Authority says it can’t support current plan for Charleston flood wall
Editorial: Charleston gets some answers on a peninsula barrier but still needs many more
9/16/2021
USACE wants to ‘avoid’ dredging Masonboro Inlet for Wrightsville Beach nourishment projects
https://www.wect.com/2021/09/14/usace-wants-avoid-dredging-masonboro-wrightsville-beach-nourishment-projects/ 

Waterways Commission weighs options for dredging Hatteras Inlet
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/waterways-commission-weighs-options-for-dredging-hatteras-inlet/ 

Oak Island Council accepts detailed beach report
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_d935e886-1646-11ec-8e8c-af4a873a3212.html

Graves/Scalise urge delay of National Flood Insurance Program rate increases
https://pelicanpostonline.com/graves-scalise-urge-delay-of-national-flood-insurance-program-rate-increases/

9/14/2021
The American Shoreline Podcast - Dreaming Up the Best Beach Management Scheme in the Business with Rudi Rudolph
https://www.coastalnewstoday.com/podcasts/dreaming-up-the-best-beach-management-scheme-in-the-business-with-rudi-rudolph

Dare Commissioners Oppose Rufa Red Knot Habitat Designation
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/09/14/dare-commissioners-oppose-rufa-red-knot-habitat-designation/

County requests feds withdraw rufa red knot ‘critical habitat’ proposal
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_9ad68f20-14be-11ec-b86a-d75975f85ebb.html 

Holden Beach, Corps begin $3M storm risk planning study
https://coastalreview.org/2021/09/holden-beach-corps-begin-3m-storm-risk-planning-study/ 

Charleston seawall gets cheaper in new Army Corps plan, but questions remain
Construction begins this week on long-awaited Crab Bank renourishment

POA looks at options for Litchfield creek dredging (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/poa-looks-at-options-for-litchfield-creek-dredging/

9/10/2021
Bulkhead Channel dredging scheduled for early October
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_b0641c50-11c5-11ec-bbca-9729fcfee1c4.html 

OKI group takes one final look at sand plans
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_3ae21cf8-10cf-11ec-a8fe-ffbadb310e9a.html

NC12 Task Force turns to north end of Avon 
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/09/09/nc12-task-force-turns-to-north-end-of-avon/ 

State Congressional delegation wants more public comment time on rufa red knot critical habitat proposal 
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_4607a316-109b-11ec-b36b-7ba6a0a3c69e.html

9/7/2021
Those discussions need to happen today’ - CSI Director Reide Corbett on new climate change report
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/09/03/those-discussions-need-to-happen-today/

July breaks all-time record for occupancy tax collections with $2.8M in revenue
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_bba860e0-0ea9-11ec-bee7-8b3a47b61a71.html

Freeman Park reaches capacity, truck catches fire after getting stuck in sand
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/09/06/freeman-park-reaches-capacity-truck-catches-fire-after-getting-stuck-in-sand/ 

Editorial: Improve flood insurance program
https://www.pilotonline.com/opinion/editorials/vp-ed-editorial-flood-insurance-0903-20210902-atfrihy3gnbh5ehpatknuj65p4-story.html

9/2/2021
Task force, commission tackling inlet and dredging issues
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/08/30/task-force-commission-tackling-inlet-and-dredging-issues/

US Army Corps of Engineers set to complete dredging of dangerously shallow Brunswick County inlet
https://www.wect.com/2021/08/27/us-army-corps-engineers-set-complete-dredging-dangerously-shallow-brunswick-county-inlet/ 

Problematic lake dredging project in Carolina Beach could resume soon
https://www.wect.com/2021/08/30/problematic-lake-dredging-project-carolina-beach-could-resume-soon/

Capt. Sam’s Spit case will not be reheard by SC Supreme Court 

8/27/2021
New Chafee map removes 2.5 acres in North Topsail Beach
https://coastalreview.org/2021/08/new-chafee-map-removes-2-5-acres-in-north-topsail-beach/ 

A Long Process: Town of North Topsail Beach still recovering from Hurricane Florence
https://www.jdnews.com/story/news/2021/08/26/town-north-topsail-beach-still-recovering-hurricane-florence-three-years-later/5586023001/

Carteret shore officials to seek advice on invasive plant eradication
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_99d7355c-05b4-11ec-9b3f-97a87126fb6b.html 

How Hurricane Irene Changed the Outer Banks, 10 Years Later
https://islandfreepress.org/hatteras-island-features/how-hurricane-irene-changed-the-outer-banks-10-years-later/

8/25/2021
Bogue Inlet channel remains stable, relocation not necessary for a decade or more, shore office reports
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_3d314064-0509-11ec-8b3e-b70433b5cedd.html 

During hearing, speakers urge officials to protect threatened shorebird; Carteret County to oppose critical habitat designation
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_4c33769c-01c9-11ec-a0f1-5ff88d09355d.html 

NC 12 Task Force hears briefing: “We’ve got our work cut out for us”
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/08/24/nc-12-task-force-hears-briefing-weve-got-our-work-cut-out-for-us/

8/20/2021
Winter sand project bid totals $23.4-million
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_bcb1e00a-0054-11ec-b054-6fce8269b896.html

Beach renourishment endgame starts to crystallize after months of uncertainty
https://portcitydaily.com/wrightsville-beach/2021/08/19/beach-renourishment-endgame-starts-to-crystallize-after-months-of-uncertainty/ 

Topsail Beach to oppose legislation using entire shore to protect threatened bird
https://www.starnewsonline.com/story/news/2021/08/20/topsail-beach-opposes-usfws-proposal-threatened-rufa-red-knot-bird/8187250002/

8/17/2021

Carteret County Beach Commission August Meeting Agenda
August 23, 2021; 14:00
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_08232021-1217 

Lawsuit brings focus to deadly cost of commerce: Dredging the Wilmington harbor kills sea turtles

Carteret County commissioners approve $1M for sand search study
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_c1c9c76c-ff99-11eb-9870-c3b3d6579c60.html

8/13/2021
Can NC afford to keep maintaining its beaches amid increasing climate change?

Here are 5 things we learned that shaped our understanding of NC’s Highway 12
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/state/north-carolina/article253427634.html 

Cape Carteret reports Manatee Street channel dredging project to wrap up soon
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_26e42c5a-fab8-11eb-9f58-4779db219595.html

8/12/2021

NC12 Task Force tackles a thorny problem — keeping the road viable
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/08/11/nc12-task-force-tackles-a-thorny-problem-keeping-the-road-viable/ 

Emerald Isle commission OKs Kelly Lane boat ramp dredging project
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_178e3320-fad3-11eb-b010-07e6cc72d90b.html

Feds propose expanded coastal barrier protection

By

Long-awaited Hatteras Inlet realignment proposal published Army Corps of Engineers

https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/10/31/long-awaited-hatteras-inlet-realignment-proposal-published-army-corps-of-engineers/

 

Biden admin to uproot Trump 'critical habitat' policies

BY: MICHAEL DOYLE, 10/26/2021

GREENWIRE | The Biden administration today moved to rescind Trump administration policies that crimped the designation of critical habitat to protect threatened or endangered species.  In a pair of long-anticipated moves, the Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries proposed getting rid of a Trump-era definition of critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act. FWS is also proposing to end a policy that made it easier to exclude territory.Taken together, the two proposed rule changes could significantly alter the much-litigated ESA landscape and, supporters say, enhance conservation and recovery of vulnerable animals or plants.  They will also revive the debate over practical consequences and regulatory nuts and bolts that have shadowed the ESA since the day it became law in 1973 (Greenwire, Oct. 19).

“The Endangered Species Act is one of the most important conservation tools in America and provides a safety net for species that are at risk of going extinct,” said Assistant Interior Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Shannon Estenoz.  Estenoz added that “if finalized, today’s proposed actions will bring the implementation of the Act back into alignment with its original intent and purpose — protecting and recovering America’s biological heritage for future generations.” 

The proposed changes would reverse ESA moves made in December 2020, during the final weeks of the Trump administration.  Under the ESA, critical habitat is considered "essential for the conservation of the species."  Federal agencies that authorize, fund or carry out an action on designated land must first consult with FWS to ensure it is not likely to destroy or damage a critical habitat. This can kick in, for instance, when the Forest Service is considering a timber permit or the Bureau of Reclamation is renewing an irrigation water contract.  The ESA further states that critical habitat is to be designated "on the basis of the best scientific data available and after taking into consideration the economic impact, the impact on national security, and any other relevant impact."  Last week, for instance, the Fish and Wildlife Service proposed designating more than 1.4 million acres in Oregon and California as critical habitat for a population of the Pacific marten, a vulnerable forest-dwelling mammal. Most of the designated habitat is owned by the federal government (Greenwire, Oct. 22).

Some of the most sprawling designations have provoked consternation among natural resource industry interests, such as the evergreen debate over how many million acres should be designated for the northern spotted owl.  FWS has been reconsidering the Trump administration's reduction of the owl's critical habitat from 9.6 million acres to 6.1 million acres.  One of the December 2020 rule changes revised the process for considering critical habitat exclusions.   The law allows exclusion of areas if "the benefits of such exclusion outweigh the benefits of specifying such area as part of the critical habitat," unless the exclusion "will result in the extinction of the species concerned."

The Trump-era regulations imposed last December allowed that "other relevant impacts" may be considered, including public health and safety, risk of wildfires, or pest and invasive species management (Greenwire, Dec. 17, 2020).  Trump's FWS Director Aurelia Skipwith said at the time that "in addition to improving consistency and predictability for stakeholders, these regulations will stimulate more effective conservation on the ground."  Now, the agency says it has “re-evaluated this rule and concludes that the conservation purposes of the ESA are better met by resuming its previous approach to exclusions.”  “We’re relieved that the Biden administration has taken this important step toward restoring critical protections for imperiled species,” said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “There’s just no way to save animals and plants from extinction without safeguarding the places they need to live.”

A second December 2020 rule change established for both FWS and NOAA Fisheries a joint regulatory definition of the term "habitat" under the ESA.  The agencies under the Biden administration have concluded that whether a certain area qualifies as habitat for a species should instead be made on a case-by-case basis. The agencies reason that the Trump administration’s definition excluded from consideration degraded areas that do not currently support species but that could still be essential for conservation of the species.  “If finalized, today’s proposed action of rescinding the regulatory definition of habitat will improve our ability to use the tool of critical habitat designation appropriately and effectively to conserve listed species as envisioned in the statute,” said Janet Coit, the assistant administrator for NOAA Fisheries.  Earthjustice, on behalf of multiple environmental groups, filed three lawsuits against the Trump administration for its ESA rollbacks. One is still being litigated, and two are stayed pending completion of the rulemakings announced today.  Jonathan Wood, vice president of the Montana-based Property and Environment Research Center, said, “While the 2020 rules were not perfect, axing them without consideration of their benefits or how they could be improved serves only to generate conflict and litigation.”

 

FEMA flood program slammed as misguided, regressive

BY: THOMAS FRANK, 11/01/2021

CLIMATEWIRE | Environmental officials and advocates are urging the Federal Emergency Management Agency to abolish or overhaul a program that gives millions of people discounts on flood insurance rates, saying the program is unfair and encourages development in flood zones.  The groups are targeting FEMA’s Community Rating System, which discounts flood insurance premiums on property located in communities that take flood mitigation steps such as preserving open space and requiring buildings to be elevated above flood level.  The program encourages communities to build their resilience to flooding, offering insurance discounts as a reward for flood mitigation policies.

But several officials and advocates said in recent comments to FEMA that the discounts are unfair and unwise and should be stopped or drastically revised.  The discount program “only further incentivizes bad development,” the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources told FEMA in response to the federal agency’s request for suggestions on improving the rating system.  Echoing the concern, the Association of State Floodplain Management told FEMA that discounting flood insurance premiums “is a perverse incentive which encourages development in the high flood risk area.”  Others told FEMA the discounts are unfair because they are given largely to property owners in affluent communities and force people in lower-income areas to pay higher insurance rates.  “The entire program is regressive,” Douglas County, Kan., wrote to FEMA.

The comments mark the broadest attack on the Community Rating System — known as the CRS — which researchers and government auditors have long criticized as so complex that only well-funded communities can participate.  FEMA invited the public to suggest how to make the CRS more effective and accessible to communities with large numbers of low-income or minority homeowners. FEMA is undertaking broad reviews of several programs that provide insurance and disaster aid, largely in response to President Biden’s orders to make the fight against climate change more equitable.

The CRS gives discounts to 3.5 million of the 5 million people who buy flood coverage through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program. Counties and municipalities earn the discounts for their residents by implementing flood mitigation steps approved by FEMA.  The discounts range from 5 percent to 45 percent depending on how many mitigation points a community wins from FEMA. The average discount is 13 percent, which cuts about $90 from the cost of a typical $700 flood insurance premium.  But the money for the discounts comes from the 1.5 million policyholders who own property in communities that haven’t won any mitigation points. Those policyholders pay what is in effect a surcharge that adds 15 percent to the cost of their premiums.

Several groups said the 15 percent charge is unfair because the money comes mostly from people in communities that lack the resources to undertake flood mitigation or submit a package to FEMA documenting their mitigation steps.  “This is an unfair expense for policyholders in non-participating communities, many of which are low-capacity communities that lack the resources to participate” in the CRS, the New York State Floodplain and Stormwater Managers Association told FEMA.

The Coastal Flood Resilience Project, which is an environmental coalition, told FEMA it should lobby Congress to shift the cost of the insurance discounts to federal taxpayers instead of other ratepayers.  “All taxpayers benefit from the adoption of flood resilience measures,” the project said. “Direct funding of the CRS is a good investment for the federal government as well as an effective policy for reducing the inequities in the current system.”  Other groups said FEMA should get rid of the insurance discounts and provide rewards that benefit an entire community instead of just flood insurance policyholders.  “CRS credits should be at least shared with the community, if not totally provided to the community instead of the policy holder,” the Association of State Floodplain Management told FEMA. “Policy holders are not the ones doing the work to reduce risk, the community is.”

FEMA received 211 comments in response to its call for input. Many commenters complained about the difficulty of the CRS program and following the 641-page manual. Douglas County said the cost of complying with the program exceeded the savings its residents earned through lower insurance premiums.  The Pennsylvania Association of Floodplain Managers said one problem with the CRS is the program’s name, which is “intimidating” and “a turnoff.”  What community wants to be rated by the federal government in the first place?” the association told FEMA.

A name such as the Comprehensive Resilience System or Resilience Enhancement Program “gives a higher purpose to the program,” the association added.


Isle board OKs $250K dune vegetation project for spring
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_953f2fd4-2d0c-11ec-8021-0315b7b86410.html 

Rising seas and retreating shores: A look at battling beach erosion
https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2021/10/18/rising-seas--retreating-shores

Beach renourishment funds approved for Carolina Beach, Kure Beach
https://www.wect.com/2021/10/18/beach-renourishment-funds-approved-carolina-beach-kure-beach/ 

New FEMA flood insurance system means bigger local premiums
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/10/18/i-think-we-are-going-to-see-increases-here/

hore Protection Office reports Bogue Inlet dredging work nears conclusion
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_e834cd6a-22ea-11ec-a556-fba5bdb9d103.html 

Who should pay for beach nourishment? Oak Island debates
https://www.starnewsonline.com/story/news/2021/10/05/oak-island-paid-parking-discussed-cover-beach-nourishment-costs/5783224001/

If you have flood insurance, the price is likely going up. What that means in NC
https://insurancenewsnet.com/oarticle/if-you-have-flood-insurance-the-price-is-likely-going-up-what-that-means-in-nc-the-charlotte-observer-3

Michael Doyle, E&E News, 08/12/2021


PROPOSAL =

 https://www.fws.gov/cbra/maps/Draft-Maps.html
The Fish and Wildlife Service today proposed adding 10,012 coastal acres to a national roster of lands covered by certain federal protections.  While relatively modest, the proposed addition of wetlands and aquatic habitat in parts of Florida and South Carolina, marks the Biden administration’s first effort to expand the John H. Chafee Coastal Barrier Resources System.  The proposed expansion, which requires congressional approval, also follows the Biden administration’s reversal of a Trump administration policy that opened the door to federal funding of sand mining and other projects on the designated coastal barrier lands.
The Coastal Barrier Resources System consists of relatively undeveloped coastal barriers along the coasts of the Gulf of Mexico, Atlantic Ocean, Great Lakes, U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico that are depicted on a set of FWS maps.  Barrier islands protection coastal communities and infrastructure and serve as important habitats for many coastal and marine species.  “The impacts of sea level rise and storm surge due to climate change will greatly increase both the risk associated with  developing coastal barriers and the value of these areas for fish and wildlife habitat and as cost-effective buffers to protect mainland communities against coastal storm damage,” FWS has noted.
The Coastal Barrier Resources Act of 1982 prohibits federal funding for activities like flood insurance, road construction and dredging on relatively undeveloped coastal areas. Development still can occur in areas added to the CBRS provided that private or other nonfederal parties cover the full cost.  The system originally included 186 geographic units spanning about 433,000 acres. It now includes 870 geographic units covering about 3.5 million acres of land and aquatic habitat.
During the Trump administration, CBRS map revisions were proposed for public review. However, no final recommended maps were transmitted to Congress. The comprehensive mapping process is lengthy.  Congress did adopt revised maps in 2018 and 2019, but those maps had all been transmitted for consideration during the Obama administration.  The 2019 revision removed 65 acres and added 639 acres to the coastal barrier system.  The 2018 map revision, which also removed some lands, overall added about 18,000 acres and was approved by the House on a 375-1 vote.
“The Coastal Barrier Resources System has proven to be a win-win for the taxpayers and the environment since its enactment in 1982, saving the taxpayers billions of dollars by avoiding federal investment in undeveloped storm- and flood-prone areas,” Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) said during debate on the 2018 revision.  In 2019, then-Interior Secretary David Bernhardt reversed a decades-old policy preventing communities from using federal funds to remove sand from protected areas to rebuild eroded beaches.  Last month, citing a new opinion from the department solicitor's office, Interior reversed the Trump-era policy (Greenwire, July 19).  “The legislative history shows that Congress viewed beach renourishment as an unwise investment of Federal funds,” the new legal opinion stated. “Such projects were disfavored because removal of sand from a system unit could endanger extant communities, and because replenishing beaches elsewhere could encourage development of vulnerable beachfront areas.”


8/11/2021

Groups challenge Corps’ elimination of dredge window
https://coastalreview.org/2021/08/corps-eliminating-hopper-dredge-window-draws-lawsuit/ 

Cape Fear River Watch and others file lawsuit against Army Corps of Engineers for dredging changes
https://www.wect.com/2021/08/06/cape-fear-river-watch-others-file-lawsuit-against-army-corps-engineers-dredging-changes/ 

Conservation Groups File Lawsuit Challenging Elimination of Critical North Carolina Protections for Sea Turtles and Fish

The NC 12 conundrum: How do you maintain a vital OBX highway that keeps disappearing?
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/state/north-carolina/article252949078.html 

If severe weather persists, Outer Banks' N.C. 12 may become a road to nowhere

Op-Ed - Learn from Miami regarding NC 12. Start planning now for it to disappear
https://www.newsobserver.com/opinion/article253250013.html 

7/31/2021
Carteret County beaches proposed as critical habitat for threatened rufa red knot, concerning shore protection officials
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_1c896dd4-f07b-11eb-a0aa-47a7a124ef99.html 

Underlying science shows reasons for NC 12 trouble
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/07/29/underlying-science-shows-reasons-for-nc-12-trouble/ 

Eroded Chesapeake Bay beach will get more sand this winter
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/environment/vp-nw-ocean-park-sand-0729-20210729-fljm4d62w5acvieco7qoqicibm-story.html

7/29/2021
Carteret beach panel endorses $2.95M contract for sand location study
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_905f3dac-ef12-11eb-8792-bf3cb25ba8c8.html 

CBRA - Policy change could alter beach nourishment project plans
https://www.witn.com/video/2021/07/28/policy-change-could-alter-beach-nourishment-project-plans/

CBRA - Denying Sand to Stone Harbor and North Wildwood is Utter Nonsense
https://www.capemaycountyherald.com/opinion/article_a2c7156e-ef12-11eb-ad5d-3f043cb190c9.html

7/26/2021
New law nixes 3-bid requirement for dredging contracts
https://coastalreview.org/2021/07/new-law-nixes-3-bid-requirement-for-dredging-contracts/

CBRA - New federal sand policy doesn’t threaten local nourishment, dredging projects, for now
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_d13e3c1c-eb23-11eb-8517-f723ae64269c.html 

CBRA - New Biden administration policy could jeopardize beach renourishment formula for local towns
https://portcitydaily.com/new-hanover-county/2021/07/25/biden-policy-beach-renourishment-cbra/

7/22/2021
Carteret County Beach Commission July Meeting Agenda
July 26, 2021; 14:00
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_07262021-1214 

Who owns the beach? It depends on state law and tide lines
https://news.yahoo.com/owns-beach-depends-state-law-121251182.html 

DUNEX research, delayed by pandemic, set to resume
https://coastalreview.org/2021/07/dunex-research-delayed-by-pandemic-set-to-resume/ 

7/19/2021
Waterways Commission works towards year-round dredging of Hatteras Inlet
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/waterways-commission-works-towards-year-round-dredging-of-hatteras-inlet/

Shoring Up Beaches May Get Tougher Under Biden Administration
https://www.wsj.com/articles/shoring-up-beaches-may-get-tougher-under-biden-administration-11626354001

How North Carolina's wind energy plans could be thwarted by Brunswick County
https://www.starnewsonline.com/story/news/2021/07/19/why-tourism-and-wind-power-odds-brunswick-county/7981598002/

PUBLIC NOTICE - USFWS Reinstates Long-Standing Interpretation of CBRA for Shoreline Stabilization Projects
The Department of the Interior (Department) has reinstated its long-standing interpretation under the Coastal Barrier Resources Act (CBRA) as it relates to certain federally-funded shoreline stabilization projects. The Department, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will once again advise federal agencies that sand from within the Coastal Barrier Resources System (CBRS) may not be used to nourish beaches located outside of the CBRS under the exception for “nonstructural projects for shoreline stabilization that are designed to mimic, enhance, or restore a natural stabilization system” (16 U.S.C § 3505(a)(6)(G)). This decision is based on a July 14, 2021 legal interpretation of the CBRA exception and reaffirms a position the Department held on this matter from 1994-2019. Federal agencies may contact their local Ecological Services field office to determine how this interpretation will affect specific projects. Additional information is available in a Frequently Asked Questions document.

7/13/2021
NTB won’t join beach nourishment project partnership
https://coastalreview.org/2021/07/ntb-passes-on-beach-nourishment-project-partnership/

Commentary: Does the Corps adequately protect the coast? 
https://coastalreview.org/2021/07/commentary-does-the-corps-adequately-protect-the-coast/

Research shows how cities 'game' FEMA flood program
Thomas Frank, E&E News, July 13, 2021
Thirty-one years ago, the federal government began rewarding communities that took action to minimize their flood risk with an innovative program that gives residents discounts on their flood insurance premiums.  The Community Rating System is popular — roughly 3.5 million property owners are getting discounts on flood policies they buy through the federal National Flood Insurance Program because their government has done something noteworthy to reduce flood damage.  But a Brown University researcher says the program is doing little to improve the nation's flood resilience because it doesn't actually encourage communities to take new steps.  Rather, the Community Rating System, known as the CRS, merely rewards communities for actions they have already taken.  And communities that join the program are those that have the capacity to undertake the extensive paperwork that is required to submit an application. Those are generally large communities with adequate planning staff — or small, wealthy communities with the money to hire a consultant.
"You either need to be big or you need to be rich," Brown graduate student Jon Nelson said at a recent flood conference. "It's bureaucratic capacity."  Nelson's research, which he summarized at a Columbia University conference last month on managed retreat, adds to the growing number of questions about the CRS and its effectiveness and fairness.  A Government Accountability Office report last year found that numerous communities struggle to hire or retain staff needed for flood-related activities such as "fulfilling CRS paperwork requirements."  An analysis in 2016 by the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center found that most communities "undertake only those activities that are fairly easy to undertake."  And a 2017 study published in the International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction found that "the main reason for not joining the CRS is lack of resources."
In a synopsis of his research provided at the Columbia conference, Nelson wrote that local planners "are happy to participate in the CRS if they have adequate capacity to undertake the onerous documentation required." But participation in the CRS "has little bearing on their efforts to adapt to sea-level rise."  "This suggests that the program is not only largely ineffective, but that it is effectively a subsidy to better-off communities with the ability to join," he said.
Nelson interviewed municipal officials in Rhode Island for his research and found that the CRS incentives — insurance discounts — did not encourage town planners to join the program. Residents didn't lobby local officials to join the CRS because they didn't know about the discounts.  "The biggest determinant of CRS participation is your planning capacity," Nelson said in an interview. "If you only have one planner, you're not going to be in the CRS."  Nelson also found that communities participating in the CRS were no more likely than non-CRS communities to take flood-mitigation steps such as acquiring open space to absorb floodwaters and protect a community.  "Maybe they did great things prior to applying. But I don't see any evidence that it's changing their behavior," Nelson said of communities that participate in the CRS. "There are communities that are not in the CRS that are doing great things."
Nelson's research for a doctoral dissertation comes at a pivotal time.  The Federal Emergency Management Agency, which runs the CRS and the federal flood-insurance program, is undertaking a sweeping review of its programs to determine if they can be made more equitable for underserved communities.  At the same time, FEMA is planning to restructure its insurance rates and charge millions of policyholders higher premiums — a move that may spur more communities to join the CRS and get insurance discounts for their residents.  FEMA said in response to questions about Nelson's research that the agency "is grateful to the academic community for their many contributions to our understanding of the efficacy" of the CRS. FEMA said it is "interested in learning more about Jon Nelson's findings."  The CRS enables communities to win insurance discounts for their residents of up to 45% by taking various actions to improve flood resilience. Communities are rewarded for steps such as effectively informing residents of flood risk, requiring buildings in flood zones to be elevated and clearing floodplains of development.  Although 70% of the 5 million people who buy flood insurance through FEMA's NFIP get some level of discount through the CRS, those people are concentrated in major metro areas such as Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans and Houston. 
But only 1,500 of the 20,000 communities that offer federal flood insurance participate in the CRS program, reflecting the difficulty of joining.  Nelson said that during his interviews with local planners in New England, a few said they made a conscious decision not to join the CRS because they felt the insurance discounts "distort the price signal of flood risk."  Other planners thought the program gave them "leverage against developers" because they could turn down projects with the argument that building in a floodplain would forfeit the community's insurance discount, Nelson said.  "There are a ton of good ideas in the CRS manual for reducing your flood risk," Nelson said. He suggests FEMA provide communities technical assistance — instead of insurance discounts — to help them implement flood mitigation.
"I think it's a well-intentioned program, but communities have figured out how to game it," Nelson said.


7/6/2021
Beach commission, shore protection office plan study to ID additional sources of sand for nourishment projects
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_751231ca-da91-11eb-8391-5b91ecdf3266.html 

Congress hears about local beach nourishment woes, Cooper adds his support
https://portcitydaily.com/new-hanover-county/2021/07/05/congress-hears-about-local-beach-nourishment-woes-cooper-adds-his-support/ 

7/1/2021
More boaters finding trouble in waters near Cape Lookout 
https://coastalreview.org/2021/06/more-boaters-finding-trouble-in-waters-near-cape-lookout/

Gov. Cooper writes letter urging feds to include New Hanover beaches among renourishment projects this year

Beach commission endorses DOD grant application for Taylor’s Creek dredging, Radio Island nourishment
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_7c298f86-d8fb-11eb-a2e8-874f5097e3b0.html 

PUBLIC NOTICE (BUXTON NOURISHMENT) - The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from the Village of Buxton seeking Department of the Army authorization to dredge 1.2 million cubic yards of beach quality sediments from an offshore borrow source, and deposit the material along an approximately 2.9-mile section of oceanfront shoreline, in the Village of Buxton, Dare County, North Carolina.
https://saw-reg.usace.army.mil/PN/2021/SAW-2021-01266-PN.pdf 

PUBLIC NOTICE (AVON NOURISHMENT) – The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from the Village of Avon seeking Department of the Army authorization to dredge 1 million cubic yards of beach quality sediments from two offshore borrow sources, and deposit the material along an approximately 2.5-mile section of oceanfront shoreline, in the Village of Avon, Dare County, North Carolina.
https://saw-reg.usace.army.mil/PN/2021/SAW-2021-01265-PN.pdf

6/29/2021
Beach commission to consider military grant application for Taylor’s Creek dredging, Radio Island nourishment
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/news/article_747b3eaa-d5be-11eb-ba51-5b52e500707c.html

Corps collecting data for 20-year dredged materials plan
https://coastalreview.org/2021/06/corps-collecting-data-for-20-year-dredged-materials-plan/

Biden admin plans to overturn Trump sand mining policy
Michael Doyle, E&E News reporter, June 25, 2021 
The Interior Department has agreed to revise a controversial Trump administration policy that allowed federally funded sand mining and beach nourishment in protected coastal areas, a new court filing shows.  Though the brief June 22 filing in federal court does not specify the precise revisions to come, the move clearly marks a victory for environmentalists who challenged the policy imposed by then-Interior Secretary David Bernhardt in 2019.  "Defendants have determined or anticipate determining to revise the 2019 interpretation of [law], which is the subject of Plaintiff's lawsuit," government attorneys wrote. "Defendants further anticipate issuing a new legal interpretation before July 16, 2021."
The Fish and Wildlife Service declined to comment today.
The 1982 Coastal Barrier Resources Act prohibits federal funding for activities like flood insurance, road construction and dredging on relatively undeveloped coastal areas. Bernhardt asked Interior's solicitor to review the prohibition on using federal funding to fortify beaches with sand from areas under CBRA protection after GOP lawmakers requested the change.  The solicitor opined that the prohibition does not apply to beach stabilization projects.  "The Trump administration is committed to protecting our coastlines and utilizing our available resources to restore, enhance or stabilize our beaches consistent with the law Congress wrote," Bernhardt wrote.  The National Audubon Society sued in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, arguing that the Trump rule was making fragile coastal areas more vulnerable to storm surge from hurricanes.  The lawsuit was put on hold while the Biden administration determined whether it would stick with the Trump interpretation or change course. Administration attorneys had said in prior court filings they were shooting for a decision by today.
In the meantime, a joint U.S. Geological Survey and Fish and Wildlife Service study requested by Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.), the chair of the House Natural Resources Committee, pinpointed the complicated consequences of what's sometimes called sediment management (Greenwire, June 14).  When sediment is moved, it may lead to coastal erosion near the removal location and alter an island's ability to withstand future storms, says the report.  Dredging can also alter the quality of seafloor habitats, such as beds of sea grass and fish nurseries.  "The [report] provides new documentation of the short- and long-term damage to the coastal environment, fisheries, habitat and coastal resiliency that results from the sand mining that the Trump Administration wrongly greenlit," conservation groups and others wrote Interior Secretary Deb Haaland on June 15.  On the other hand, in addition to the short-term protection from coastal hazards that beach nourishment provides, it also increases nesting habitats for some coastal wildlife.  The Coastal Barrier Resources System consists of relatively undeveloped coastal barriers along the coasts of the Gulf of Mexico, Atlantic Ocean and Great Lakes that are depicted on a set of maps maintained by FWS.  The system now includes about 1.3 million acres of land across 585 units, as well as an additional 2.1 million acres of "otherwise protected areas."  Barrier islands play a key role in storm protection for coastal communities and serve as important habitats for many coastal and marine species.


6/22/2021
Carteret County Beach Commission June Meeting Agenda
June 28, 2021; 14:00
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_06282021-1209 

NC Coastal Federation wraps up Atlantic Harbor shoreline project with plantings
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_e6f4ee72-d06e-11eb-bdff-e790dfda780b.html 

Carolina Beach closes Freeman Park citing capacity concerns
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/06/19/carolina-beach-closes-freeman-park-for-immediate-future/

6/17/2021
‘Ditch of Death’: Navigation in Hatteras Inlet dicey … again
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/ditch-of-death-navigation-in-hatteras-inlet-dicey-again/ 

N.C. 12 is being threatened by storms and erosion. A new task force is working to protect it.
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/vp-nw-nc-12-group-20210616-prjh4elmdbdihmoascgexhwct4-story.html 

Half of prehistoric SC site may be claimed by the sea by fall

Cape Carteret secures grant to dredge municipal boat ramp channel
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_8a9ce37c-ced5-11eb-9f5b-bbc0b4bc0190.html

6/14/2021
New Task Force to tackle N.C. Highway 12 hot spots
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/new-task-force-to-tackle-n-c-highway-12-hot-spots/

More hurricanes, stronger wind velocity may be ‘new normal,’ Carteret County Shore Protection says
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_162f85ca-ca21-11eb-abd9-9ffcc9c00ae8.html 

Commentary: SC Supreme Court ruling on Capt. Sam’s Spit is a victory for entire coast

6/4/2021
2021 Hurricane Season Preview with our “New Normal” in mind
Carteret County Shore Protection Office Shorelines Newsletter (July 2021)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/1365

USGS, FWS Report Highlights Impacts of Sediment Management on Barrier Islands, Wildlife and Ecosystems
https://www.usgs.gov/news/usgs-fws-report-highlights-impacts-sediment-management-barrier-islands-wildlife-and-ecosystems 

Dredge study looks at disposal sites offshore (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/dredge-study-looks-at-disposal-sites-offshore/ 

At senator’s urging, council enters dispute over North Inlet (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/at-senators-urging-council-enters-dispute-over-north-inlet/ 

6/3/2021

How municipal districts at North Topsail Beach could shoulder $16M for beach nourishment
https://www.jdnews.com/story/news/2021/06/02/north-topsail-beach-debates-municipal-districts-how-tax-money-divided/7438816002/ 

SC Supreme Court overturns permits in latest battle over Captain Sam’s Spit
Hybrid beachgrass could mean trouble for Northwest coast
https://apnews.com/article/wa-state-wire-science-environment-and-nature-b7c09da872433327bcd43e4d1f07a8ff 

NOAA issues biological opinion on right whales
https://www.ellsworthamerican.com/maine-news/waterfront/noaa-issues-biological-opinion-on-right-whales/

5/31/2021
Rep. David Rouzer weighs in on unresolved beach nourishment funding debacle
https://portcitydaily.com/wrightsville-beach/2021/05/29/rep-david-rouzer-weighs-in-on-unresolved-beach-nourishment-funding-debacle/

New framework in place for beach nourishment on national seashore
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/05/29/new-framework-in-place-for-beach-nourishment-on-national-seashore/ 

Sand Litigation Stalled (NJ, CBRA related)
https://www.capemaycountyherald.com/news/government/article_791a7f4c-c089-11eb-8d30-efbc452c7dce.html 

Subcontractor wraps up dune planting in Emerald Isle; 400K pieces of vegetation installed along 6.4 miles
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_ab7be3a0-bfe3-11eb-ab86-7347f3f5caad.html

Rising Oceans Part 2: What does sea-level rise mean for the future of North Carolina’s coast?
https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2021/05/26/what-does-the-future-of-sea-level-rise-mean-for-north-carolina-outer-banks- 

Rising Oceans Part 3: What are N.C. coastal communities doing to prepare for sea-level rise?
https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2021/05/26/what-are-north-carolina-s-coastal-communities-doing-to-prepare-for-sea-level-rise-

5/28/2021
PLANTING COMPLETED!
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

NEW! Emerald Isle Public Service Announcement – Stay off the Dune Plants 😊
https://youtu.be/nn6rhAyWEds 

Lockwood Folly Inlet reaches danger point
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_9664a250-be48-11eb-a37f-4b351fe67431.html 

Rising Oceans Part 1: Sea-level rise is already reshaping North Carolina’s coast
https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nc/charlotte/news/2021/05/25/rising-oceans-part-1--sea-level-rise-is-already-reshaping-north-carolina-s-coast 

5/26/2021

Hatteras Inlet open for fishing tournament, survey requested
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/05/23/hatteras-inlet-open-for-fishing-tournament-survey-requested/ 

Editor’s Blog: The new Sediment Management Framework, and why it’s important
https://islandfreepress.org/fishing-report/editors-blog-the-new-sediment-management-framework-and-why-its-important/ 

Study focuses on beach nourishment’s impact on organisms; long-term implications still unknown
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_971f187c-bc97-11eb-a6d5-5731885b57cc.html 

Federal proceedings blame Texas Land Commissioner for trampling private property rights
https://texasnewstoday.com/federal-proceedings-blame-texas-land-commissioner-for-trampling-private-property-rights/284519/ 

Isle of Palms City Council unanimously opposes bill reducing its control over parking
https://www.live5news.com/2021/05/21/isle-palms-city-council-unanimously-opposes-bill-reducing-its-control-over-parking/ 

McMaster signs law protecting free South Carolina beach parking, amid home rule concerns

5/21/2021
PLANTING IS ROUGHLY 85% COMPLETE
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Two NC lawmakers push for federal assistance to protect North Topsail Beach’s shoreline
https://www.wwaytv3.com/2021/05/18/two-nc-lawmakers-push-for-federal-assistance-to-protect-north-topsail-beachs-shoreline/ 

Avon to hold hearing on beach sand, flood control project
https://coastalreview.org/2021/05/avon-to-hold-hearing-on-beach-sand-flood-control-project/ 

Oak Island dredge work gets extension
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_8cbcbb6e-b8d7-11eb-872a-435dc781e5da.html 

South Carolina House passes S.40 beach parking rule change, bill heads to Governor
https://abcnews4.com/news/local/bill-changing-south-carolina-beach-parking-rules-passes-in-the-house-heads-to-governor 

5/18/2021
Southern Shores Town Council establishes MSDs; tax increases to be determined
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/05/16/southern-shores-town-council-establishes-msds-tax-increases-to-be-determined/

North Topsail Beach’s service districts plan draws ire
https://coastalreview.org/2021/05/north-topsail-beachs-service-districts-plan-draws-ire/

Nags Head Board of Commissioners proposes extending current MSDs, establishing new ones
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/05/17/nags-head-board-of-commissioners-proposes-extending-current-msds-establishing-new-ones/

Historic Ocracoke Lighthouse could be moved: ‘The writing is on the wall’
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/vp-nw-ocracoke-lighthouse-20210515-pijwo2id3zg77kcbmy2ibyfyem-story.html

As erosion forces Snow's Cut Park closure, nearby sites weigh added visitor demand
https://www.starnewsonline.com/story/news/2021/05/18/snows-cut-park-closure-erosion-safety-precautions-local-parks-wilmington-nc/5128234001/ 

Feds raise protections for North Atlantic right whales, but sea turtles may suffer
https://saportareport.com/feds-raise-protections-for-north-atlantic-right-whales-but-sea-turtles-may-suffer/sections/reports/david/

5/14/2021
GREAT PLANTING PROGRESS (more photos)
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

NPS completes all work related to sediment management framework for Cape Hatteras National Seashore
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-driving-on-the-beach/nps-completes-all-work-related-to-sediment-management-framework/

5/12/2021
Waterways Commission to discuss NCDOT proposal to move South Dock
https://ocracokeobserver.com/2021/05/11/waterways-commission-to-discuss-ncdot-proposal-to-move-south-dock/

Battle against earth-moving forces ends at Snows Cut Park. Erosion wins
https://portcitydaily.com/new-hanover-county/2021/05/12/battle-against-earth-moving-forces-ends-at-snows-cut-park-erosion-wins/

Earmark floodgates open: Who wants what?
George Cahlink, E&E News reporter, 5/12/2021
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) wants $3 million to study the resiliency of a century-old sea wall on the San Francisco waterfront.  House Energy and Commerce Committee member Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) is in search of $892,000 to remove seals from the Columbia River that feast on its salmon.  House Republican Whip Steve Scalise hopes for $15 million for a coastal floodgate in his hurricane-prone home state of Louisiana.  And perhaps most surprising of all: A freshman Republican from Texas, Rep. Beth Van Duyne, leads the entire pack with the largest request: $354 million, mostly for improvements to a local airport.
Those projects are an example of the wide-ranging and highly parochial spending earmarks House lawmakers have requested for the fiscal 2022 appropriations bills — the first to have earmarks in a decade.  All told, House members are seeking 2,887 earmarks valued at a total of $5.897 billion, according to the chamber's Appropriations Committee, which has posted all the lawmakers' requests online.  Aside from the requests, the committee's website has a database that contains required justification for the projects, information on the community or organization making the request, and a letter from the lawmaker saying they will not benefit from it financially. The stringent disclosure rules are aimed at avoiding past earmark scandals.  House Appropriations Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) said last week at a forum hosted by the Brookings Institution that community project funding — her name for earmarks — will account for as much as $14 billion, or 1%, of fiscal 2022 discretionary spending.
"The decisions will be made based on the substance and the merit of the program, and every member is apprised that while you had [the chance] to put in 10 requests, no one is going to be getting 10 requests. There are just a few of their requests that will be [funded}," DeLauro said.  The deadline for earmark requests was April 30, although some more may be allowed once President Biden releases his full budget request in the coming weeks.
The Senate, too, is reviving earmarks, although it has yet to spell out specific rules. Still, they are likely to be similar to the House's.  
"Every member of this chamber has their hands tied. Why? Because we ceded the power of the purse to unelected bureaucrats here in Washington when we instituted a ban on congressionally directed spending," said Senate Appropriations Chair Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.).  Leahy said during floor remarks last month he would split earmarks equally between Democrats and Republicans.  Similarly, House Transportation and Infrastructure Chair Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) said earlier this year that members could get up to $20 million each in earmarks in the panel's forthcoming highway bill (E&E Daily, April 16).
Yesterday, DeFazio said the committee had received more than 2,000 project submissions from more than 300 members. Many of the requests deal with funding road repairs.  "I was pleased by the high level of participation, on a bipartisan basis, in this process," said DeFazio. "Now I look forward to advancing our surface bill soon, complete with member-designated projects, and working with all my colleagues to send a transformational bill that creates jobs and improves our communities to the president's desk."
Top billing
The Interior-EPA and the Energy-Water bills rank in the top half of the 12 spending measures for earmarked dollars being requested.  Lawmakers made 312 requests for Interior-EPA earmarks valued at $697.3 million and 73 requests for Energy-Water earmarks' worth $481.6 million, according to an analysis of public appropriations data first published by CQ Roll Call.  Many of the Interior-EPA projects are focused on clean water drinking or sewer projects for local communities. For example, senior appropriator Rep. Mark Amodei (R-Nev.) wants $1.5 million in state assistance grants for a water filtration plant in Carson City, Nev.
Energy-Water requests often are tied to high-dollar Army Corps of Engineers port, harbor and waterway projects. For example, Ohio Rep. David Joyce, the top Republican Interior-EPA appropriator, sought about $6 million for two Army Corps dredging projects in his district.
The Transportation-Housing and Urban Development bill is by far the largest target, with 1,079 earmark requests worth $2.7 billion. Many of those proposals are for roads, bridges and other infrastructure projects that lawmakers are eager to fund as they tend to be popular with voters.
Notably, the Defense spending bill received 15 requests worth $32 million, after lawmakers barred for-profit organizations, such as weapons contractors, from receiving earmarks. In the past, Pentagon contractors were a top recipient of earmarks.  No requests were made for the Legislative Branch or State-Foreign Operations bills. Neither is associated with community projects.
Who wants what?
Only one Democrat, California Rep. Katie Porter, opted against making any requests, while about half of Republicans sought the directed spending. The split reflects lingering opposition of many conservatives to resurrecting earmarks.  "Earmarks are a wasteful, swampy practice that no conservative should support," said the Heritage Foundation earlier this spring after House Republicans only narrowly voted to restore earmarks. "Using taxpayer dollars for pet projects and political favors in home districts incentivizes abuse and pork-barrel spending, and has no place in Congress."  Disclosures show the largest request for earmarks came from two Texas lawmakers, Van Duyne ($354 million) and Democratic Rep. Colin Allred ($241 million), a result of proposals for major infrastructure upgrades at the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.
The average amount of earmark requests sought was $10.8 million for Democrats and $15.9 million for Republicans. Lawmakers were limited to no more than 10 requests, although many lawmakers proposed less than the maximum.  On the House Energy and Commerce Committee, ranking Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington far outpaced Chair Frank Pallone (D-N.J.). Her requests totaled $53.9 million, most of which were aimed at local water and sewer projects. Pallone sought $14.1 million in earmarks, including nearly $1 million for coastal resiliency research.  Appropriators, who will ultimately decide what requests make it into the spending bills, accounted for nearly a fifth of all the earmark requests. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), chair of the Energy-Water Appropriations Subcommittee, sought $15.7 million in earmarks, including $2 million for building a solar farm in a low-income neighborhood in Toledo.  Her Republican counterpart, Idaho Rep. Mike Simpson, made $27.2 million in requests, including $10.1 million for a tribal fire station and $7.75 million for modernizing a federal sheep research facility in Dubois, Idaho.  Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine), the Interior-EPA chair, sought $6.4 million in earmarks, among them nearly $1 million for a climate coordination center at the University of Maine. Her counterpart, Joyce, requested more than three times as much in earmarks, seeking a total of $20.7 million with several tied to his district's Lake Erie.  Natural Resources Chair Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.) sought $6.4 million in earmarks, including $148,000 to remove 158 acres of invasive grasses that are a wildfire hazard in his district. His GOP counterpart, Arkansas Rep. Bruce Westerman, has not requested any earmarks.  All Democratic leaders sought earmarks, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn of South Carolina was tops among them, seeking $47 million in earmarks. Pelosi was more in line with her party average, seeking around $14 million.  Aside from Scalise, who requested $27.8 million in earmarks, other GOP leaders declined to request them.  However, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), who is expected to replace Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) as conference chair this month, sought $46.1 million, a move that could frustrate the party's right flank, which has already questioned her conservative credentials.
Policy priorities
In many cases, lawmakers' policy expertise and local interests dovetailed with their spending requests.  Rep. Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.), chair of the E&C Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change is seeking $3.7 million for a floating solar energy demonstration project on a water reserve in Cohoes, N.Y.  And Rep. Jared Huffman (D-Calif.), chair of the Natural Resources Subcommittee on Waters, Oceans and Wildlife, sought $500,000 for protecting distressed or stranded mammals along his district's coastline.  Simpson said appropriators will try to focus on merit in awarding the funds, but he knows politics will ultimately factor in.
"If you look at it and say, 'OK, we've only got enough money to do one of these two requests. This is a vulnerable member that has a tough reelection. This one here is in a safe district.' Guess where you're probably going to go?"  Simpson said. "Let's be honest. That will happen on both sides."  Indeed, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has named 32 lawmakers to its Frontline program, an effort aimed at protecting vulnerable members. All Frontliners but Porter have requested earmarks.  G. William Hoagland, senior vice president of the Bipartisan Policy Center, acknowledged there are always some politics in earmarking, but he said ultimately having them could help move spending bills with bipartisan support.  "Particularly for conservatives, it makes it a lot easier for those individuals to be able to support the legislation because it's bringing the bacon home," he said.

5/11/2021
Carteret County Beach Commission February Meeting Agenda
May 17, 2021; 14:00
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_05172021-1206

Phase III Completed & Caps The Post-Florence Renourishment Project
Carteret County Shore Protection Office Shorelines Newsletter (June 2021)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/1364 

Subcontractor begins dune planting to wrap up Emerald Isle nourishment project
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_eae34dd0-af6c-11eb-80a7-9b199f1fcf04.html

5/6/2021
PLANTING STARTS TODAY (new photos).
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Charleston advisers on peninsula seawall have a lot of questions about the $1.4B project
Lawsuit opposes year-round dredging in coastal Georgia waters
5/5/2021
Judge asked to halt dredges during sea turtle nesting season (Ga)
https://apnews.com/article/turtles-business-900db03fb64056a76cc41ba581a68628 

Topsail Reef Sandbags OK’d For 5 More Years
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/05/ntb-oversized-sandbags-oked-5-more-years/ 

NTB Municipal Service Districts Hearing Set
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/05/ntb-municipal-service-districts-hearing-set/

5/3/2021
N.C. and FEMA approves $5,782,866 to help restore Buxton beaches
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/n-c-and-fema-approves-5782866-to-help-restore-buxton-beaches/ 

Officials Seek Long-Term Plan to Save NC 12
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/05/officials-seek-long-term-plan-to-save-nc-12/

An experiment near Folly Beach tries new approach to battle erosion (SC)

4/30/2021
Sunset Beach Clear to Begin Creek Dredging
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/04/sunset-beach-clear-to-begin-creek-dredging/

Sand district fees postponed until 2022
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_13639620-a860-11eb-afcf-0fdff424c96e.html 

County backs legislation to keep free parking (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/county-backs-legislation-to-keep-free-parking/ 

Avon beach nourishment project moves forward
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/04/26/avon-beach-nourishment-project-moves-forward/

4/26/2021

PROJECT COMPLETE & DEMOBILIZATION IN FULL SWING.  EASTERN REGIONAL ACCESS CLOSED TODAY BUT RE-OPENED TOMORROW.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Oak Island to stall decision on sand assessments
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/04/24/oak-island-to-stall-decision-on-sand-assessments/

Avon Beach Nourishment Project Featured on NBC’s Today Show
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/avon-beach-nourishment-project-featured-on-nbcs-today-show/

4/22/2021
HOME STRETCH.  COULD BE COMPLETED ON MONDAY (April 26th).  EASTERN REGIONAL ACCESS CLOSED FOR THE WEEKEND AS BOTH BEACHFILLS FROM THE ELLIS ISLAND AND LIBERTY ISLAND WILL MEET THERE.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Southern Shores Town Council continues efforts to establish MSDs to fund beach nourishment

‘They have abandoned us.’ Sand assessments could cost beachfront Oak Islanders up to $27,000
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/04/22/they-have-abandoned-us-sand-assessments-could-cost-oak-islanders-as-much-as-27000/ 

Conservation groups save Hutaff Island, sandwiched between Figure 8 and Topsail
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/04/22/conservation-groups-save-hutaff-island-sandwiched-between-figure-8-and-topsail/ 

4/19/2021
9,400 LINEAR FEET TO GO (OUT OF 49,455 LINEAR FEET TOTAL)
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Contractor completes Deer Creek, Old Ferry Channel dredging work
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_476c8b36-a11a-11eb-89b4-e7514cef0017.html 

Crab Bank compromise will move dredge material away from mouth of Shem Creek (SC)
4/15/2021
DUNE PLANTING TO START THE FIRST WEEK OF MAY.  WE’RE READY TO FLIP THE PIPE AT RHETT STREET (LINE 4) AND HEAD EAST WHILE THE ELLIS ISLAND CONTINUES PUMPING AT 14th STREET (LINE 5) TO THE EAST - CURRENTLY AT 9th/8th STREET. 
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Ocean Isle Wins Appeal on Terminal Groin
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/04/ocean-isle-wins-appeal-on-terminal-groin/

Two dredges to attack shoaling in Big Foot Slough 
https://ocracokeobserver.com/2021/04/12/two-dredges-to-attack-shoaling-in-big-foot-slough/ 

Dredging underway at Hatteras Inlet
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/dredging-underway-at-hatteras-inlet/ 

Oak Island to Consider Tax District Map
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/04/oak-island-to-consider-tax-district-map/

4/12/2021
LIBERTY ISLAND & ELLIS ISLAND CONTINUE AT LINE 4 (RHETT STREET) HEADING WEST AND AT 14th STREET (LINE 5) HEADING EAST TOWARDS THE LOWER NUMBERED STREETS, RESPECTIVELY.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Owners say a court bar on condemnations could end suits (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/owners-say-a-court-bar-on-condemndations-could-end-suits/ 

Hovey plans to appeal ruling on Duck beach access
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/04/09/hovey-plans-to-appeal-ruling-on-duck-beach-access/

Corridor in place to access Cape Point due to oystercatcher breeding
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/04/12/corridor-in-place-to-access-cape-point-due-to-oystercatcher-breeding/ 

4/8/2021
SPRING BREAK WEEKEND UPDATE - WORK AT LINE 3 ALMOST COMPLETE.  LIBERTY ISLAND NOW AT LINE 4 (RHETT STREET) HEADING WEST.  ELLIS ISLAND TO BE MOBILIZED TO LINE 5 LATER TODAY AT 14th STREET HEADING EAST TOWARDS THE LOWER NUMBERED STREETS – “BERM ONLY”.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Appeals Court rules Duck beach access is private
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/04/07/appeals-court-rules-duck-beach-access-is-private/

Oak Island sand assessment districts spark concerns
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_fc4edfa4-97ce-11eb-8161-4f9fbc50c124.html 

Oak Island residents speak out against beach nourishment fee proposal
https://www.wwaytv3.com/2021/04/06/oak-island-residents-speak-out-against-beach-nourishment-fee-proposal/

Cedar Island, Swan Quarter ferry routes suspended due to shoaling
https://ocracokeobserver.com/2021/04/07/cedar-island-swan-quarter-ferry-routes-suspended-due-to-shoaling/

Dare County takes another step towards an Avon Beach Nourishment Project
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/dare-county-takes-another-step-towards-an-avon-beach-nourishment-project/ 

4/5/2021
SPRING BREAK WEEK UPDATE – LIBERTY ISLAND STARTS AT 14th STREET (LINE 5), ELLIS ISLAND TO FINISH WITH LINE 3 THIS WEEK AND MOVE TO LINE 4 AT RHETT STREET ON OR ABOUT APRIL 10th
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

The Debate Over Avon Beach Nourishment
https://islandfreepress.org/blog/editors-blog-the-debate-over-avon-beach-nourishment/ 

U.S. rolls out first update to flood insurance pricing in 50 years
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-fema-floodinsurance-idUSKBN2BO6SB

Millions to see rate hikes under new flood insurance plan
Thomas Frank, E&E News, April 2, 2021
More than 1 million people who buy flood insurance from the federal government will see their premiums drop next year under a new system that will end decades of overpayments by making insurance rates more accurately reflect a property's flood risk, officials said yesterday.  At the same time, premiums charged by the National Flood Insurance Program will rise sharply for about 200,000 policyholders, many of whom own expensive homes in high-risk flood zones and have been paying too little, the Federal Emergency Management Agency said.  The vast majority of NFIP policyholders — roughly 3.7 million people — will see moderate rate increases, according to FEMA projections released yesterday.  "This will address inequity that has built up over time and must be corrected," said David Maurstad, who runs the flood insurance program for FEMA. "Property owners with lower-value homes are paying more than they should, and those with higher-value homes are paying less."  Many owners of lower-valued homes have been "paying way more than their fair share," Maurstad added.
The NFIP is the nation's main provider of flood insurance, which is not included in standard homeowners' insurance policies. It insures 5 million properties, mostly along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts.  The overhaul in FEMA's flood insurance rates could generate opposition from some lawmakers, particularly those from the Northeast, where a large number of people will see rate hikes. A 2019 bill by Sens. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), who is now the Senate majority leader, would have barred FEMA from raising anyone's insurance rate by more than 9% a year.
New York and New Jersey will be two of the hardest-hit states under FEMA's new system.  In New York, 14% of the state's NFIP policyholders will see their premiums increase by at least $120 a year, according to FEMA projections. In New Jersey, 15% of the policyholders will see premiums rise by $120 a year or more.  "FEMA shouldn't be rushing to overhaul their process and risk dramatically increasing premiums on middle-class and working-class families without first consulting with Congress and the communities at greatest risk to the effects of climate change," Schumer spokesperson Alex Nguyen said in a recent statement. "Congress and the Biden administration must work together in a collaborative and transparent process."
By contrast, the percentage of policyholders facing at least a $120-a-year increase is 7% in Texas, 9% in Alabama and North Carolina, and 10% in Louisiana. In Florida, where more people buy NFIP coverage than any other state, 12% of the state's policyholders will see a rate increase of at least $120 a year.  Some policyholders will face the annual rate hikes for only a few years, while others who have been paying too little for insurance for a long time will see rate hikes for a decade or longer.  The new rates will begin to take effect next April for people who are renewing policies. For new policyholders, the new premiums will take effect in October.  FEMA's announcement yesterday drew praise from environmental advocates.  "This isn't just a minor improvement but a quantitative and qualitative leap forward in more accurately pricing risk," said Forbes Tompkins, head of the Pew Charitable Trusts' resilient infrastructure program.
Shana Udvardy, a climate resilience analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists, said FEMA's new insurance rates "could go a long way in helping homeowners better understand their risk, ensuring they can make informed decisions to protect themselves and their property."  The new insurance rates are the result of a yearslong process FEMA has undertaken to refine its analysis of flood risk. Under the new system, called Risk Rating 2.0, FEMA uses the latest technology and data to estimate both the risk of an individual home being flooded and the cost to replace each home.  For decades, FEMA has used a crude analysis that puts homes into large geographic groupings and charges the owners the same insurance premium, ignoring distinctions that make some of the homes riskier than others.  "It's like going from a standard-definition TV to HD-quality resolution," Tompkins said.  Incorporating replacement costs into insurance premiums would result in generally higher rates in regions such as the Northeast and the West Coast, where labor and materials are more expensive than in the rest of the country.
Maurstad of FEMA said he expects the new pricing would increase the number of people who have flood insurance by making the rates fairer and easier for homeowners and insurance agents to understand.  "It will result in greater value and trust in the program. As a result, folks that maybe didn't think they were at much of a risk of flooding will now know that they are, and it will be harder for them to ignore it," Maurstad said during a news briefing yesterday.  Federal law requires people to have flood insurance if they own a property that is located in a flood zone and is secured by a federally backed mortgage. But millions of people ignore the requirement, and in some cases face financial ruin when their homes are flooded and they have no insurance.


4/1/2021
EASTER WEEKEND UPDATE - ELLIS ISLAND TO FINISH WITH LINE 2 TODAY AND MOVE TO LINE 4 ON FRIDAY, LIBERTY ISLAND TO REFUEL.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers pushes back against dredging plan criticism

N. Topsail Beach Eyes Shoreline Options
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/04/53921/

Cost of beach renourishment could double resident property taxes
https://wcti12.com/news/local/property-taxes-may-double-for-residents 

Shallowbag Bay Dredging Work Complete
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/03/53908/

McElraft’s conservation, nourishment funding bill gains bipartisan support in legislature
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_bb2ac0da-90ab-11eb-bdea-5f321e399f56.html 

PUBLIC NOTICE – The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from the Town of Kitty Hawk seeking Department of the Army authorization to dredge 2.282 million cubic yards of beach quality sediments from an offshore borrow source, and deposit the material along approximately 3.77-mile section of oceanfront shoreline, in the Town of Kitty Hawk, Dare County, North Carolina.
https://saw-reg.usace.army.mil/PN/2021/SAW-2021-00568-PN.pdf 


3/29/2021
ELLIS ISLAND TO FINISH WITH LINE 2 LATER THIS WEEK AND MOVE TO LINE 4, LIBERTY ISLAND FILL HEADING EAST FROM LINE 3.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Summertime dredging in Georgia threatens sea turtles; Corps allowed to kill 214 loggerheads
https://www.savannahnow.com/story/news/2021/03/26/dredging-georgia-threatens-sea-turtles-summer-right-whales-winter/4704913001/

Corps will move forward while town seeks beach easements (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/corps-will-move-forward-while-town-seeks-beach-easements/

A town-county conflict could halt North Topsail's beach renourishment project
https://www.witn.com/2021/03/26/a-town-county-conflict-could-halt-north-topsails-beach-renourishment-project/ 

Hope emerges in quest to fund beach projects after federal fallout, still no guarantee
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/03/25/hope-emerges-in-quest-to-fund-beach-projects-after-federal-fallout-still-no-guarantee/

Cedar Point contributes $2,500 to Bogue Inlet dredging
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_96d57bd4-8d87-11eb-aa76-23a651652510.html

NPS releases Sediment Management Framework Final Environmental Impact Statement for Cape Hatteras National Seashore

3/25/2021
PIPE FLIPPED AND UNDER THE PIER; BEACHFILL HEADING TOWARDS EACH OTHER.  NEW PHOTOS.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Surf City offering $250 visitor parking passes to help offset costs of beach nourishment
https://www.witn.com/2021/03/24/surf-city-offering-250-visitor-parking-passes-to-help-offset-costs-of-beach-nourishment/

3/24/2021
PROJECT COMPLETE! (3/17/2021) 
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment  
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

To fight extreme erosion, North Topsail Beach asks for jetty-like structure
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/03/22/to-fight-extreme-erosion-north-topsail-beach-asks-for-jetty-like-structure/

SC Supreme Court mulls danger of future erosion and development of Captain Sam’s Spit
Dredging begins in Big Foot and Hatteras Inlet
https://ocracokeobserver.com/2021/03/23/dredging-begins-in-big-foot-on-hold-in-hatteras-inlet/

Dare okays $60K to sustain Hatteras Inlet dredging
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/03/22/dare-okays-60k-to-sustain-hatteras-inlet-dredging/ 

3/22/2021
ELLIS ISLAND & LIBERTY ISLAND PRODUCING.  READY TO FLIP THE PIPE TOMORROW AT THE PIER.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

At Southern Shores public hearing, concerns about beach nourishment taxes
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/03/17/at-southern-shores-public-hearing-concerns-about-beach-nourishment-taxes/ 

Holden Beach Awarded $15.49 Million to Renourish Beaches Damaged by Hurricane Dorian
https://www.einnews.com/pr_news/537098448/holden-beach-awarded-15-49-million-to-renourish-beaches-damaged-by-hurricane-dorian 

A new hope to boost the Outer Banks fishing industry to new heights
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/vp-nw-new-dredge-20210320-pycn5w2wargv5otcrp7btwrvyq-story.html 

Dare commissioners discuss dredging
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/vp-nw-new-dredge-20210320-pycn5w2wargv5otcrp7btwrvyq-story.html

3/17/2021

PUMPING ON TWO LINES W/ THE ELLIS ISLAND & LIBERTY ISLAND BEFORE ROUGH SEAS HIT
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Avon beachfront property owners facing 62% property tax hike to pay for beach widening
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/vp-nw-avon-tax-20210316-ro4phf3aufaflbjs57ioqjjfl4-story.html

3/16/2021
Here’s ‘Miss Katie,’ the new dredge due in ’22
htt

ps://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/03/16/heres-miss-katie-the-new-dredge-due-in-22/ 


Hatteras Inlet still clogged, dredging efforts hampered by tides
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/03/16/hatteras-inlet-still-clogged-dredging-efforts-hampered-by-tides/
 
Dare Board advances Avon beach nourishment project
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/03/15/dare-board-advances-avon-beach-nourishment-project/

3/15/2021
TWO DREDGES – TWO DISCRETE NOURISHMENT AREAS.  ELLIS ISLAND TO ARRIVE TOMORROW 
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Scoping Meeting - North Topsail New River Inlet Management Master Plan
https://saw-reg.usace.army.mil/PN/2021/SAW-2016-02091-PN.pdf

Avon Beach Nourishment Tax will be discussed at Monday’s Board of Commissioners Meeting
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/reminder-avon-beach-nourishment-tax-will-be-discussed-at-mondays-board-of-commissioners-meeting/

Big flood insurance rate changes are coming to NC. Will they be fair?
https://www.charlotteobserver.com/opinion/article249899613.html

3/12/2021
Murphy Says Jetties Needed at Oregon Inlet
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/03/murphy-says-jetties-needed-at-oregon-inlet/

Bogue Inlet dredging set for spring; Cape Carteret pitches in money
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_e96bd68c-80f7-11eb-827b-03663800f44b.html

Avon Beach Nourishment Tax to be discussed at Monday’s Board of Commissioners Meeting
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/avon-beach-nourishment-tax-to-be-discussed-at-mondays-board-of-commissioners-meeting/ 

Dredging in Hatteras Inlet has had little progress, per Waterways Commission Meeting

River, inlet dredging restores area beaches
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_195d9698-81af-11eb-962d-ffd33ce5f40f.html 

Service district plan advances; house hearing delayed
https://stateportpilot.com/news/article_13eca612-81b0-11eb-bbe9-178f174fc5ec.html 

Funding Nourishment Projects Locally, Southern Shores Proposal Nails It!

3/10/2021

DRONE VIDEO, REACH 1 (Far West Emerald Isle) COMPLETE, CENTRAL EMERALD ISLE REACH STARTED.  
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

DRONE VIDEO.  NOURISHMENT CONTINUES TO PROGRESS WEST OF OCEANANA PIER. 
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment  
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

3/8/2021

REACH 1 (Far West Emerald Isle) ALMOST COMPLETE, SHOULD START ON "LINE 2" TOMORROW 
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Southern Shores public hearing March 16 on property tax districts to pay for beach nourishment
https://www.obxtoday.com/southern-shores-public-hearing-march-16-on-property-tax-districts-to-pay-for-beach-nourishment/

Council To Consider Hiring Law Firm To Communicate With Federal Officials
http://www.islandgazette.net/news-18/index.php/top-stories/item/9418-council-to-consider-hiring-law-firm-to-communicate-with-federal-officials 

Wilmington-area beach projects lose federal funding
https://www.jdnews.com/story/news/2021/03/08/federal-funding-disappears-new-hanover-county-beach-nourishment-projects/4599469001/ 

In Kitty Hawk, a debate over a beach access
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/03/05/in-kitty-hawk-a-debate-over-a-beach-access/

Behre: If this is what ‘perimeter protection’ looks like, let’s have more please

3/3/2021

GOOD FIRST WEEK OF PRODUCTIVITY, COULD "FLIP THE PIPE" TODAY IN REACH 1 
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

NOURISHMENT PROGRESSES WEST OF OCEANANA PIER
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment

Chesapeake Bay beaches battered by recent storms will be replenished
https://www.pilotonline.com/news/environment/vp-nw-cape-henry-beach-erosion-0226-20210226-bwusrq3b2fefhk4je3wd2odmxy-story.html

Homes flooded as Intracoastal Waterway still rising near Myrtle Beach
https://www.cbs17.com/news/south/homes-flooded-as-intracoastal-waterway-still-rising-near-myrtle-beach/

2/27/2021
PROJECT START!!! (2/26/2021) w/ THE LIBERTY ISLAND 
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Additional Details and Lots of Questions Arise at Avon Beach Nourishment Public Meeting
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/additional-details-and-lots-of-questions-arise-at-avon-beach-nourishment-public-meeting/ 

Outten stresses need for Avon beach project
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/02/25/outten-stresses-need-for-avon-beach-project/

Ferry channel, creek dredging proceeds, but residents voice concerns about street damage from heavy equipment
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_4b9f6f7c-784b-11eb-87ef-f70c3f496dca.html

2/25/2021
JS CHATRY BACK IN RANGE A AFTER MOORED IN THE HARBOR FOR SEA CONDITIONS.  ROUGHLY 700 LINEAR FEET TO GO ON THE BEACH BEFORE JUMPING TO THE WEST SIDE OF OCEANANA PIER
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment

Dare commissioners support amending Hatteras Inlet’s federal authorization
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/02/25/dare-commissioners-support-amending-hatteras-inlets-federal-authorization/ 

Scramble On For New Hanover Sand Money
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/02/scramble-on-for-new-hanover-sand-money/ 

Proposed Avon Beach Nourishment Tax Lowered from 40/10 Cents to 25/5 Cents
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/proposed-avon-beach-nourishment-tax-lowered/ 

2/24/2021

LIBERTY ISLAND ARRIVED MONDAY – REPAIRS UNDERWAY – PROJECT START PLANNED FOR TOMORROW
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Beach towns scramble to find federal funds after beach nourishment money disappears
https://portcitydaily.com/new-hanover-county/2021/02/22/beach-towns-scramble-to-find-federal-funds-after-beach-nourishment-money-disappears/

Avon Beach Nourishment FAQs – What to Know Ahead of the Feb. 24 Public Meeting
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/avon-beach-nourishment-faqs-what-to-know-ahead-of-the-feb-24-public-meeting/

REMINDER: Meeting on Proposed Avon Beach Nourishment Project will be Held on Feb. 24
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/avon-beach-nourishment-meeting-on-feb-24/

A $1.4 billion Army Corps plan to protect Charleston from hurricane surge changes
https://www.postandcourier.com/news/a-1-4-billion-army-corps-plan-to-protect-charleston-from-hurricane-surge-changes/article_e1c4e8f8-722c-11eb-b56c-db6024475ca1.html 
2/17/2021
LIBERTY ISLAND ALL SET TO ARRIVE AND LIKELY START ON FEBRUARY 21, 2021 
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

BEACHFILL APPROACHING DUNES CLUB.  JS CHATRY TO BE BACK IN ACTION SOON
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment
2/10/2021
SAME SCHEDULE.   NEW PLANTING, SAND FENCING, AND POST & ROPE NOTES.  NEW PSA AND SAND FENCING FACT SHEET!  
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

RANGE B COMPLETED; BEACHFILL CONTINUES ADVANCING WEST.
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment

2/9/2021
Carteret County Beach Commission February Meeting Agenda
February 16, 2021; 14:00
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_02162021-1196 

Managing dredge material review at Dare’s waterways commission
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/02/04/managing-dredge-material-review-at-dares-waterways-commission/

Bills Would Clear Way for Terminal Groins
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/02/bills-would-clear-way-for-terminal-groins/

2/4/2021


GETTING EVERYTHING SET FOR THE FEBRAURY 20th.
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

WORK ON THE OUTSIDE/WORK ON THE INSIDE (1/3 Complete)
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

North Topsail OK’d for Dune Restoration
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/02/north-topsail-okd-for-dune-restoration/

Dare County to host meeting on Avon beach project
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/02/04/dare-county-to-host-meeting-on-avon-beach-project/

2/3/2021
Avon Beach Nourishment, the Future of N.C. 12, and New Dredge Highlighted in State of the County 2021 Presentation
https://islandfreepress.org/outer-banks-news/avon-beach-nourishment-the-future-of-n-c-12-new-dredge-highlighted-in-state-of-the-county-2021-presentation/

To rebuild beaches, Outer Banks will spend $99M in one year
https://greensboro.com/news/state-and-regional/to-rebuild-beaches-outer-banks-expects-to-spend-99m-in-1-year/article_64788f3a-d484-5629-8bbc-63cd4a52492e.html 
SCDOT tells Isle of Palms to restore beach parking, rolls back prior approval
https://www.postandcourier.com/news/scdot-tells-isle-of-palms-to-restore-beach-parking-rolls-back-prior-approval/article_ba749e94-64e2-11eb-afcc-ef29d374ed0b.html

Congressman Murphy: Additional dredging for Silver Lake Harbor
https://www.dredgingtoday.com/2021/02/02/congressman-murphy-additional-dredging-for-silver-lake-harbor/

1/27/2021
2nd SUBMERGED PIPELINE LANDING SET IN REACH 3; START DATE PUSHED BACK TO ROUGHLY FEBRUARY 20th
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

NICE PROGRESS
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

State agrees to allow year-round dredging at ports
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_1bc7c44e-5f63-11eb-a3f8-03acaca4a7b3.html

Funding for Wilmington-area beach nourishment disappears at last minute; local leaders shocked
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/01/25/funding-for-wilmington-area-beach-nourishment-disappears-at-last-minute-local-leaders-shocked/

SC Statehouse Beach Fight: Should Towns Have Free Parking?
https://apnews.com/article/transportation-public-access-legislation-coronavirus-pandemic-local-governments-20d139595343190ea580ae7cddf97e28 

1/25/2021
Town Of Carolina Beach Working Towards Restarting Lake Dredge Project
http://www.islandgazette.net/news-18/index.php/top-stories/item/9390-town-of-carolina-beach-working-towards-restarting-lake-dredge-project
 

Waterways Commission tackles dredge material disposal
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/01/23/waterways-commission-tackles-dredge-material-disposal/

Southeastern NC beaches take measures to preserve dunes every year, here's one way
https://www.starnewsonline.com/story/news/2021/01/23/oak-island-beach-dunes-preserved-christmas-trees/6661513002/

Biden quietly reinstates national flood standard
Thomas Frank, E&E News reporter, January 25, 2021
President Biden's reinstatement of a flood-protection policy that President Trump had revoked is cheering climate advocates and signaling that the new administration will move to strengthen the nation's resilience to natural disasters.  Biden revived an Obama-era executive order that had sought to require all new federally funded projects located in flood zones — including roads, housing and public works — to be built to withstand flooding under scenarios that incorporate the effects of climate change.  Reinstating President Obama's Federal Flood Risk Management Standard, which Trump revoked in 2017 before agencies could implement it, became a priority for environmental and conservation groups after Biden's election.

"This is an extremely promising step in the right direction to getting the country to have a mindset that systematically incorporates resilience to future flooding," said Forbes Tompkins, head of the Pew Charitable Trusts' resilient infrastructure program.  Rob Moore of the Natural Resources Defense Council called Biden's move last week "the first step toward the federal government getting out of the business of subsidizing development in low-lying flood-prone areas."  "This applies to every federally financed project and therefore affects tens of billions if not hundreds of billions of dollars in federal infrastructure and housing," Moore added.

Biden's reinstatement of the flood policy could take several years to implement. It is expected to draw opposition from powerful groups such as homebuilders, building contractors and the fossil fuel industry, all of which could try to minimize the policy's scope.  The Biden administration will have to issue guidance on the policy to federal agencies, which will have to follow a rulemaking process that can take years.  "It's not as simple as flipping a switch," said Alice Hill, who worked on the Obama executive order as a member of the National Security Council in the early 2010s. "We're a long way off from seeing a home elevated as a result of President Biden's action."

The policy is likely to increase construction costs by requiring new buildings and facilities to be elevated 2 to 3 feet above projected flood levels or to have flood protection that is equivalent to the elevation. Groups including the National Association of Home Builders, National Multifamily Housing Council and National Council of State Housing Agencies had cited costs in opposing the Obama order several years ago.  Supporters say the flood-protection measures will save money in the long term by making facilities more resilient and less likely to be damaged by flooding.  "Yes, there could be upfront costs," Tompkins said. "But the return on investment far exceeds those costs."  The heightened flood-protection standards will apply to a vast range of federally funded new construction: housing subsidized by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, water and sewer plants funded by EPA, roads and bridges financed by the Department of Transportation, and local infrastructure rebuilt with Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster funds.  "This will reduce flood risk in the United States," said Hill, the former Obama official, who is now a senior fellow for energy and the environment at the Council on Foreign Relations. "Homes will be elevated, schools will be elevated, hospitals will be elevated if they rely on federal money. That will reduce federal money spent on disaster recovery."

Agencies such as the Defense Department and some states and cities have already adopted flood-protection standards for new construction that are similar to what the Biden policy will require, said Tompkins of Pew.  "In some ways, this is a long overdue step by the federal government to catch up to what a lot of states and localities are doing," he said. "It's also a great motivator for those that have yet to adopt similar standards or think about resilience. This almost incentivizes them to start doing so."  Noting that Biden's flood policy could be reversed by a future president, Tompkins said, "What's critically needed is to pass a federal flood standard through legislation."

Biden's reinstatement of the flood policy was one of his first official acts after taking office Wednesday. But the action, described in a single paragraph near the bottom of a 3,400-word executive order on public health and the environment, was overlooked until Friday when observers began scrutinizing the document.  The phrasing confused many experts, including Craig Fugate, who ran FEMA for nearly eight years in the Obama administration and wondered on Twitter on Friday whether Biden's executive order had revived the flood standard. Rather than saying directly that the flood policy was in effect, the order revoked Trump's 2017 revocation of the original Obama flood policy.  A White House official confirmed to E&E News that Biden's action reinstated the flood policy.  Biden's order directs the director of the Office of Management and Budget and the head of the White House Council on Environmental Quality to "jointly consider whether to recommend that a replacement order be issued."  "There'll be a lot more work. It's a complex issue," Hill said.

The Obama flood policy grew out of a study of Superstorm Sandy in 2012, which urged the creation of a national flood standard "in recognition that flood conditions were changing and climate change was bringing more flooding," Hill said.  After Obama announced the policy in an executive order in January 2015, agencies including FEMA, HUD, EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers drafted rules to implement the flood standard. None of the agencies had finalized their rules by the time Trump revoked Obama's order in August 2017, which forced them to withdraw their proposed rules.  During the recent presidential transition, groups such as Pew and NRDC had urged the incoming Biden administration to reinstate the flood standard, saying it would be an easy and effective way to strengthen the nation's resilience to flood damage.  "The fact that we're at the beginning of a presidential transition period is great for getting this decision made," said Moore of NRDC.

1/22/2021

BACK IN ACTION, VERY CLOSE TO ENTERING ATLANTIC BEACH (new photos)
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

Agreement OKs Year-Round Ports Dredging
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/01/agreement-oks-year-round-ports-dredging/

What you need to know about Charleston’s $2 billion storm surge project
https://www.charlestoncitypaper.com/story/a-2-billion-storm-surge-project-is-poised-to-change-charleston-forever-heres-what-you-need-to-know

Judge upholds state permit for DeBordieu groins (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/judge-upholds-state-permit-for-debordieu-groins/

1/20/2021
1st SUBMERGED PIPELINE SET; PHOTOS; FEBRAURY 12th CONTINUES TO BE THE START DATE
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Old Ferry Channel dredging underway, Emerald Isle beach project delayed
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_4efccee8-59b6-11eb-a258-efda33aee324.html

Court rules in favor of DeBordieu Colony's beach nourishment plan (SC)
https://wpde.com/news/local/court-rules-in-favor-of-debordieu-colonys-beach-nourishment-plan

1/18/2021
PAUSE IN OPERATIONS
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

Lawsuit seeks more protection for endangered right whales
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/01/15/lawsuit-seeks-more-protection-for-endangered-right-whales/

Judge rules for homeowners in beach easement suits (SC)
https://coastalobserver.com/judge-rules-for-homeowners-in-beach-easement-suits/

Feds seek to add marsh and undeveloped islands near Folly to protection program (SC)
https://www.postandcourier.com/news/feds-seek-to-add-marsh-and-undeveloped-islands-near-folly-to-protection-program/article_e27020ce-5440-11eb-8068-27250e0a7589.html 

Emerald Isle concurs with decision to reject federal beach nourishment plan
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_d5fe7dbe-574b-11eb-9903-17bf004bc5cd.html

1/13/2021
MOBILIZATION SCHEDULE GENERALLY THE SAME, START DATE PUSHED TO FEBRAURY 12th
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Mount Pleasant leaders push back on Crab Bank renourishment location (SC)
https://www.live5news.com/2021/01/11/mount-pleasant-leaders-push-back-crab-bank-renourishment-location/

Atlantic Beach voices support for county’s existing beach master plan
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_1f5de806-5511-11eb-aacf-eb8d3d097fc4.html

1/12/2021
PROJECT START!
Morehead City Harbor Dredging – Ft. Macon/Atlantic Beach Nourishment
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/826/

1/11/2021
In Nags Head, questions on beach nourishment funds
https://www.outerbanksvoice.com/2021/01/08/in-nags-head-questions-over-beach-nourishment-funding/ 

Charleston needs to better plan how Army Corps wall fits into the city, consultant says
https://www.postandcourier.com/news/charleston-needs-to-better-plan-how-army-corps-wall-fits-into-the-city-consultant-says/article_29e52452-4075-11eb-a0f9-5ff80af41bfa.html

Federal spending bill makes way for local beach projects
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2021/01/07/federal-spending-bill-makes-way-for-local-beach-projects/ 


1/6/2021
LOOKING TO START THE LAST WEEK OF JANUARY   
Post-Florence Renourishment Project (Phase III)
http://www.carteretcountync.gov/827/

Fort Macon, other locations accepting natural Christmas trees
https://www.carolinacoastonline.com/news_times/article_553d74ae-4ea0-11eb-9123-0730df081566.html 

Long-Term Plans Ahead for Shifting Sands
https://www.coastalreview.org/2021/01/long-term-plans-ahead-for-shifting-sands/


1/2/2021
Beach nourishment decisions loom for Dare commissioners
https://www.thecoastlandtimes.com/2021/01/01/beach-nourishment-decisions-loom-for-dare-commissioners/

North Topsail Beach homeowners reuse Christmas trees to build up dunes
https://portcitydaily.com/local-news/2020/12/29/north-topsail-beach-homeowners-reuse-christmas-trees-to-build-up-dunes/ 

The 2020 Battle Over SC Public Beach Access and Parking Ends the Year in a Draw
https://www.postandcourier.com/news/the-2020-battle-over-sc-public-beach-access-and-parking-ends-the-year-in-a/article_030c5b42-43a5-11eb-8829-7bc110d39758.html