DEQ awards $10.5 million in coastal storm damage grants

The N.C. Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Water Resources (DWR) is awarding more than $10.5 million for seven projects in coastal North Carolina for beach and dune renourishment, as well as other projects related to hurricane and storm damage.

“The Coastal Storm Damage grants help restore and rebuild communities and support their work to build a more resilient future for the residents and visitors who value our coastal resources,” said Secretary Elizabeth S. Biser.

The following project proposals were approved for funding from the Coastal Storm Damage Mitigation Fund:

  • Dare County 4-Towns Beach Nourishment (Duck, Southern Shores, Kitty Hawk and Kill Devil Hills), $7.53 million
  • Ocean Isle Beach East End Dune Construction, $1.019 million
  • Topsail Island Vitex Eradication Project, $690,060.50
  • Town of Oak Island Dune Planting, $440,000
  • Town of Nags Head 2027 Nourishment Project Engineering Services, $301,000
  • Bogue Banks Beach Nourishment Phase 2, $291,564
  • Southern Hatteras Island Offshore Sand Assessment Study, $250,000

After a call for applications from the coastal communities, DWR received seven applications. All project applicants were awarded funding. The applicants are matching the $10.5 million in state grant funding with $32 million in local government funds.

Applications were scored on six criteria, including environmental benefits, social benefits, economic benefits, life of the project, financial resources and project efficiency. To learn more about the criteria, go to the guidelines on the department’s website.

DWR’s Coastal Storm Damage Mitigation Fund is funded by the N.C. General Assembly through Session Law 2023-134, which allocated $10 million for costs associated with beach nourishment, artificial dunes and other projects to mitigate or remediate coastal storm damage to the ocean beaches and dune systems of the state. In addition, unexpended funds that were returned to the state were made available to fund additional projects.