Anthropogenic Controls on Overwash Deposition: Evidence and Consequences Public Deposited

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  • March 19, 2019
  • Rogers, Laura
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Geological Sciences
  • Accelerated sea-level rise and potential future increases in storminess due to climate change will threaten the vitality of barrier islands by lowering their relative elevation and altering overwash frequency. High-density development may further increase island vulnerability by restricting delivery of overwash to the subaerial island. I analyzed pre- and post-Hurricane Sandy (2012) LiDAR surveys of the New Jersey coast to assess human influence. I compared natural environments to two developed environments (commercial and residential) using shore-perpendicular topographic profiles. The volume of overwash delivered to residential and commercial areas is reduced by 40% and 90%, respectively, of that delivered to the natural environment. I use this analysis and an exploratory barrier island evolution model to assess long-term impacts of anthropogenic structures. Simulations suggest natural barrier islands may persist under a range of likely future sea-level rise scenarios (7–13 mm/yr) whereas developed barrier islands will have a long-term tendency toward drowning.
Date of publication
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  • In Copyright
  • Rodriguez, Antonio
  • Pavelsky, Tamlin
  • Moore, Laura
  • Master of Science
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2015
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
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