Coastal County Snapshots

Created: 7/31/2017 - Updated: 2/27/2020


Coastal County Snapshots is an online tool that produces user-friendly reports identifying and describing three categories of coastal hazards and change — flooding risk, wetland impacts, and ocean jobs impact — for selected coastal counties in the United States. Users select a coastal county, and the tool generates reports for the three categories identifying and describing changes that have occurred (e.g., changes in land cover, job trends) and important sectoral information (e.g., amount of coastal infrastructure at risk from flooding, how wetlands can be used to reduce flood impacts). Information generated in the snapshots can be used to help communities become more resilient to coastal hazards. The snapshots contain simple charts, graphs and descriptions of impacts and other relevant information, and are useful outreach and communication tools that can be used to educate decision-makers, managers, and coastal citizens.

Example in use: The Coastal Snapshots tool has been applied throughout the United States (see for a list of areas that have used the tool). In the Southeast, the State of Florida integrated access to the Coastal County Snapshot tool in in its Geospatial Assessment Tool for Operations and Response (GATOR), an interactive mapping tool used to assist emergency preparedness and responses. The Coastal County Snapshots tool was added to GATOR to provide additional demographic, economic, and environmental data to the interface. The tool helps emergency managers use the reports to assess a county’s exposure to storms and flooding and helps managers communicate with coastal communities about coastal hazards and risks.

Phase of Adaptation: Awareness, Planning, Sharing


Land managers, natural resource managers, local authorities, planners, engineers, scientists, community members


This organization was established in 2014 when NOAA combined two offices: the Coastal Services Center and the Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management. The basic missions of the two programs remain intact, but the new organizational structure is bringing value-added services to taxpayers.


Sector Addressed
Conservation / Restoration
Development (socioeconomic)
Disaster Risk Management
Education / Outreach
Land Use Planning
Landscape Architecture
Transportation / Infrastructure
Target Climate Changes and Impacts
Type of Tool
Adaptation Planning / Decision Support
Communication / Outreach
Habitat/Biome Type