State of the Beach/State Reports/NH/Beach Fill

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New Hampshire Ratings
Indicator Type Information Status
Beach Access86
Water Quality89
Beach Erosion3-
Erosion Response-5
Beach Fill2-
Shoreline Structures8 3
Beach Ecology3-
Surfing Areas35
Website5-


Policies

State, Territory, and Commonwealth Beach Nourishment Programs, A National Overview (NOAA, March 2000) provides the following information:

"The state has some policies regarding beach nourishment. Shoreline erosion is a problem of limited scope since the state only has 10.2 miles of beachfront.

Policy Citation and Description

New Hampshire Coastal Program Policies - July 1988. Coastal Dependent Uses #14. Preserve and protect coastal and tidal waters and fish and wildlife resources from adverse effects of dredging and dredged disposal, while ensuring the availability of navigable waters to coastal-dependent uses. Encourage beach renourishment and wildlife habitat restoration as a means of dredge disposal whenever compatible.

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §482-A. I. Fill and Dredge in Wetlands Act. This statute regulates activities that excavate, remove, fill, dredge or construct any structures in or on any bank, flat, marsh, or swamp in and adjacent to any waters of the state without a permit from the department.

Related Policies

Near Shore Sand Mining Regulations

New Hampshire Coastal Program Policies - July 1988. Protection of Coastal Resources #3. Regulate the mining of sand and gravel resources in offshore and onshore locations so as to ensure protection of submerged lands, and marine and estuarine live. Ensure adherence to minimum standards for restoring natural resources impacted from onshore sand and gravel operations.

Dredge and Fill Regulations

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §482-A. I. Fill and Dredge in Wetlands Act. This statute regulates activities that excavate, remove, fill, dredge or construct any structures in or on any bank, flat, marsh, or swamp in and adjacent to any waters of the state without a permit from the department.

New Hampshire Coastal Program Policies - July 1988. Coastal Dependent Uses #14. Preserve and protect coastal and tidal waters and fish and wildlife resources from adverse effects of dredging and dredged disposal, while ensuring the availability of navigable waters to coastal-dependent uses. Encourage beach renourishment and wildlife habitat restoration as a means of dredge disposal whenever compatible.

Sand Scraping/Dune Reshaping Regulations

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §482-A.VII. Fill and Dredge in Wetlands Act. No person shall destroy, raze, reduce, alter, build upon or remove any sand or vegetation from any sand dune in this state without a permit from the department.

Dune Creation/Restoration Regulations

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §482-A.VII. Fill and Dredge in Wetlands Act. No person shall destroy, raze, reduce, alter, build upon or remove any sand or vegetation from any sand dune in this state without a permit from the department.

Public Access Regulations

New Hampshire Coastal Program Policies - July 1988. Recreation and Public Access # 7. Provide a wide range of outdoor recreational opportunities including public access in the seacoast through the maintenance and improvement of the existing public facilities and the acquisition and development of new recreational areas and public access.

Beach Nourishment Funding Program

New Hampshire provides funding for beach nourishment on a case by case basis.

Hampton Channel and Beach Erosion Control. N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §216-B. Hampton Harbor is periodically dredged by the state and beach-quality sand is placed on Hampton Beach. The Army Corps of Engineers also periodically dredges the Hampton/ Seabrook Harbor entrance channel, but sand is not always used for beach nourishment. The most recent disposal on the beach was in 1999. Beach nourishment was also being contemplated for material dredged from the Piscataqua River in 1999.

Amount of State Funding

Unknown.

Cost Share Requirements

Federal: 60%, State and Local: 40%."


New Hampshire has had little experience with beach fill. The majority of projects within New Hampshire have been associated with the maintenance of federal waterways by the Army Corps, where the most economical method for dredged material disposal was to place the material on the beach.

The New Hampshire Dredge Management Task Force (DMTF) is an inter-agency working group formed to develop policies, rules and guidelines for dredging projects in New Hampshire’s coastal waters. The federal consistency coordinator serves as the chairperson of the DMTF. For more information, contact Chris Williams at 559-0025 or cwilliams@des.state.nh.us.

Fill and Dredge in Wetlands (Chapter 482-A)

Inventory

Information on dredging and beach fill projects in New Hampshire is available on the Website of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District. See their Update Report for New Hampshire.


Information on beach fill in New Hampshire is also available through Western Carolina University's Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines. State-by-state information is available from the pull-down menu or by clicking on a state on the map on this page.

In 2017 the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association (ASBPA) announced a new online National Beach Nourishment Database – featuring data on projects comprised of nearly 1.5 billion cubic yards of sand placed in nearly 400 projects covering the continental U.S. coastline. In addition to the total volume and the number of projects, the database includes the number of nourishment events, the oldest project, the newest project, the known total cost, the total volume and the known length. The information is broken into both state statistics and those of local or regional projects. Every coastal continental state is included (so Alaska and Hawaii are still being compiled), and projects along the Great Lakes are similarly waiting to be added.

A report National Assessment of Beach Nourishment Requirements Associated with Accelerated Sea Level Rise (Leatherman, 1989) on EPA's Climate Change Impacts and Adapting to Climate Change websites notes that the cumulative cost of sand replenishment to protect New Hampshire's coast from a 50 to 200 cm rise in sea level by 2100 is estimated at $39 million to $143 million.

The Fiscal Year 2017 Civil Works Budget for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers provides $4.62 billion in gross discretionary funding for the Civil Works program. This budget lists proposed projects and the associated budget justification by state.

State, Territory, and Commonwealth Beach Nourishment Programs: A National Overview (2000) is a report NOAA/OCRM that provides an overview of the problem of beach erosion, various means of addressing this problem, and discusses issues regarding the use of beach nourishment. Section 2 of the report provides an overview of state, territorial, and commonwealth coastal management policies regarding beach nourishment and attendant funding programs. Appendix B provides individual summaries of 33 beach nourishment programs and policies.


Contact

Jen Drociak
Restoration Specialist
NH Coastal Program
(603)559-0028
Email: jen.drociak@nh.gov



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