Part 323, Shorelands Protection and Management, of the Natural Resources Environmental and Protection Act (NREPA), 1994 Public Act 451, as amended, provides protection from the natural hazards of coastal erosion and flooding as well as environmental protection of our fragile coastal areas. Part 323 identifies and regulates High-Risk Erosion Areas (HREA), Environmental Areas (EA), and Flood Risk Areas (FRA) within the Great Lakes coastal zone. Recession rate studies of coastal shorelines defined HREAs in many counties during the 1980s. According to R 281.22 (22) the department shall update the recession rate studies every 10 years to reflect varying lake levels and changes in erosion rates. Of 29 counties currently designated 12 counties have not been updated since designation. Counties in the Lower Peninsula on Lake Michigan were last updated in the mid-1990s except for Berrien which was updated in 2007. Updates continue and the dataset is updated periodically to represent these changes. To determine these zones extensive work goes into identifying erosion hazard lines, and tools are run to determine erosion rates. The zones are then created as polygons to represent the erosion zones. For information about High Risk Erosion contact: Kate Lederle (LederleK@Michigan.gov).
Michigan Dept. of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy