About the Storm
Hurricane Sandy made landfall on Oct. 29, 2012 near Brigantine, New Jersey, devastating communities along the Atlantic Coast. Record levels of storm surge were recorded in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut, with tropical storm force winds extended over an area about 1,000 miles in diameter. A federal impact assessment in 2013 estimated that Sandy damages exceed $50 billion, with 24 states impacted by the storm.
In addition to the extensive loss of life, livelihood and property, the region's natural areas were greatly impacted. National wildlife refuges suffered loss of habitat, refuge staff productivity and visitor opportunities. Rain washed out roads, trails and dikes, hindering habitat management and reducing visitor access. Storm surge left miles of debris and hazardous materials on beaches, in coastal marshes and forests, degrading habitat and endangering staff and visitors. High winds damaged buildings and caused power outages across refuge properties.
About Our Work
The Department of the Interior is investing $787 million for Hurricane Sandy recovery to clean up and repair damaged national parks and wildlife refuges; restore and strengthen coastal marshes, wetlands and shoreline; connect and open waterways to increase fish passage and improve flood resilience; and bolster local efforts to protect communities from future storms.
These investments have the dual benefit of providing jobs while supporting the goal of President Obama's Climate Action Plan to make communities more resilient to future storms predicted with a changing climate. Interior is also supporting the development of new science to better understand impacts of storms and sea level rise on coastal ecosystems and help managers respond and adapt to changing environmental conditions. We are working to evaluate the performance of projects to enhance ecological resilience through the DOI Hurricane Sandy Project Metrics Report. We are also working on an effort to measure DOI Hurricane Sandy Project and Program Outcomes with the latest development of the Socio-Economic Metrics Report.