We can save our coasts with a $10 billion investment
| by David Helvarg & Daniel Hayden in the Hill
Ten billion dollars in funding to restore beach dunes and dune grass, salt marshes and estuaries, oyster and coral reefs may seem unrelated to the rebuilding of America’s crumbling roads, bridges and sewer plants. But restoring and expanding natural coastal barriers — or living infrastructure — is actually a practical cost-effective way of reducing the growing impacts of sea-level rise, intensified storms and “sunny-day flooding” associated with the rapidly worsening climate emergency. And those impacts will be devastating to the U.S. economy if we don’t act now. While vulnerable coastal counties comprise less than 10 percent of the nation’s landmass, they generate 46 percent of its GDP.