Our coastal communities support 42% of the U.S. population and are as diverse as our nation is as a whole. Building coastal resilience is core to our mission to protect wildlife and people within the context of a rapidly changing climate, and central to the goals and strategies outlined in our strategic plan.
• Mitigating threats and barriers to frontline communities: Our coastal communities are made up of suburban and metropolitan areas, different socio-economic groups, and people of many racial identities. While these communities share many of the same challenges to mitigating coastal impacts; low income communities and communities of color face unique barriers to addressing more intense coastal storms, regular flooding, and other climate-driven threats.
• Reducing the impact of coastal flooding in major metropolitan cities: More than 170 million people live and work in coastal communities. One acre of wetlands can store 1 million to 1.5 million gallons of floodwater.
• Protecting property and key assets: Coastal flooding threatens property and key assets, such as universities, hospitals, vacation destinations and emergency routes. New York and Boston alone are home to 82 acute care and specialty hospitals and over 120 colleges and universities.
More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. The National Wildlife Federation is on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 53 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.