What is Hazard Mitigation?

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) defines hazard mitigation as any sustainable action that reduces or eliminates long-term risk to people and property from future hazards events.

Hazard mitigation differs from disaster preparedness, response and recovery activities in its emphasis on long-term solutions that are often enacted well in advance of a hazard event.


Mitigation Categories Examples of Mitigation Actions
  • floodplain mapping
  • open space preservation
  • updating of planning and zoning codes
  • floodplain regulations
Property Protection
  • acquisition or relocation of structures and uses
  • retrofitting of existing structures
  • purchasing of flood, fire, or earthquake insurance
  • installation of sewer backup protection
Public Education & Awareness
  • public outreach projects and presentations
  • technical assistance
  • providing maps and other hazard information
  • real estate disclosures
Natural Resource Protection
  • wetlands protection
  • dune restoration
  • erosion and sediment control
  • revegetation projects
  • protection of stream channels
  • water quality improvement projects
Structural Projects
  • improvements to dams, reservoirs, and levees
  • storm drain improvements
  • installation of culverts
  • construction of debris basins and detention ponds