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Satellite view of Florida and the ocean.

Building Near the Beach?

Click the interactive map to see if your project will require a Coastal Construction Control Line permit.

Florida Beaches Habitat Conservation Plan

The Florida Beaches Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) is being developed by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection in cooperation with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and with input from a broad range of contributing partners. The HCP seeks to preserve the unique and precious wildlife and natural resources of Florida’s coastline.  Additional information is available from the Florida Beaches Habitat Conservation Plan Web Site, or the Florida Beaches Habitat Conservation Plan Brochure.

About Us 
 "To protect, restore, and manage Florida's coastal system"

No other state and very few countries can boast such an abundance of high quality beaches. The 825 miles of sandy coastline fronting the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico or the Straits of Florida are one of Florida’s most valuable natural resources. Florida’s beaches are deserving of this status because they serve several important functions, each being vital to maintaining the health of Florida’s economy and environment. For information pertaining to the length of sandy coastline...

The coastal sandy beach system is home to hundreds of species of plants and animals that are dependent upon the beaches, dunes and near shore waters for all or part of their lives. For example, beaches are used by resident and migratory shorebirds for resting, foraging and nesting and during the summer months, marine turtles come ashore to nest on the beach. There are over 30 animals considered rare within the state that inhabit the beach and adjacent habitats. These plants and animals are adapted to living in the beach’s harsh environment of salt spray, shifting and infertile sand, bright sunlight, and storms.

Beaches are also heavily used by humans. Florida’s beaches have attracted 14 million people to the state, 75% of which live within ten miles of the coast (State of the Coast Report, 1996). Both tourists and residents come to the beaches to relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of its natural beauty. Others visit the beaches and nearby waters to engage in boating, fishing, diving, and other recreations. Florida's beaches are an integral part of the state's economy, attracting tourists from around the world. Beach tourism generates about $15 billion a year to the state’s economy (State of the Coast Report, 1996).

The beach and dune system is our first line of defense against storms because it acts as a buffer between the storm waves and coastal development. During hurricanes, storm waves encounter the beach and dunes before crashing into upland structures. When this happens, the sand making up the beach and dune system may be temporarily lost to the offshore bar system absorbing energy and reducing the damage suffered by structures.

In order to protect, preserve, and manage Florida’s valuable sandy beaches and adjacent and coastal system, the Legislature adopted the Florida Beach and Shore Preservation Act, contained in to Parts I and II of Chapter 161, Florida Statutes. The Act provides three interrelated programs administered by the Department of Environmental Protection which work in concert to accomplish the task, those programs are: the Coastal Construction Control Line program, the Beach Erosion Control Program, and the Coastal Construction Program. 

The Coastal Protection and Engineering Program (Coastal Construction Control Line Permitting) protects the beach and dune system from imprudent upland construction that could weaken, damage or destroy the integrity of the beach and dune system...more 

The Beach Management Funding Assistance Program (formerly the Beach Erosion Control Program) provides funding assistance for beach and inlet management projects to restore and maintain critically eroding beaches...more 

The Coastal Construction Program or the Environmental Permitting Program (Joint Coastal and Environmental Resource Permitting) protects the shoreline from activities that could contribute to erosion...more

In order to provide the necessary data collection to support the regulatory and beach management programs described above,  Beaches and Coastal Systems (BCS) administers the Coastal Data Acquisition Program. This program is responsible for regional surveys and monitoring of the state’s sandy beach shoreline, as well as developing and maintaining the BCS Coastal GIS database...more

The Coastal Engineering Program provides the necessary research and analysis to support the regulatory and beach management programs with science-based decisions. The coastal engineering staff models shoreline changes, determines erosion rates and areas of critical erosion, and conducts regional offshore sand searches...more

Explore this website for more information on Beaches and Coastal Systems, or call our office at (850) 245-7651 .

About Us

Beaches and Coastal Programs

Engineering and Reporting Guidelines (Includes the Fishing Pier Design Guidance Reports)

C.O.A.S.T.S. Search Page

Regional Offshore Sand Source Inventory (ROSSI)

Permit Application Subscription Service

Nearshore Hardbottom in Southeastern Florida

Palm Beach Island Beach Management Agreement Project

Deepwater Horizon - Gulf Oil Spill Information

Interactive Beach and Coastal Maps

Satellite view of Florida and the ocean.

Rule Development

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Florida Division of Emergency Management

State Parks

USGS Hurricane Impact Studies Main Page

Water Program Links

Related Coastal Links

Find Your Watershed


Last updated: January 27, 2016

   2600 Blair Stone Road -  M.S. 3500   Tallahassee, Florida 32399   850-488-7708 (phone) / 850-488-5257 (fax)
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