Floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, winter storms, wildfires, and other hazardous events are a part of the world in which we live. Natural disasters occur when buildings, infrastructure, agriculture, and other land uses are impacted by a hazardous event. Communities impacted by natural disasters often require years to recover at great social and economic cost. However, the negative impacts of hazardous events can be mitigated by planning strategically for new infrastructure and using construction techniques to reduce the vulnerability of people and damage to property.
In 2004, New Hanover County Emergency Management prepared the county's first multi-jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan. The 2021 update includes partners from Brunswick County, Onslow County, and Pender County. This plan provides details for the unincorporated areas of New Hanover County, the City of Wilmington, the Town of Carolina Beach, the Town of Kure Beach, and the Town of Wrightsville Beach. The county's most recent update to the plan was updated and accepted by the Board of Commissioners on March 15, 2021.