Collections > Electronic Theses and Dissertations > Considering Holistic Coastal Response to Climate-change Induced Shifts in Natural Processes and Anthropogenic Modifications

Shoreline erosion can prompt the implementation of local shoreline modifications (e.g., beach nourishment, seawalls) intended to prevent erosion and protect coastal investments. These localized modifications can cause additional, potentially adverse shoreline change in neighboring locations. Here, we explore coastline response to nourishment under different climate change scenarios by coupling two existing, complimentary models of coastal processes; one addressing shoreline change related to alongshore sediment transport and the other addressing cross-shore changes in barrier island position and geometry. Results of model experiments relevant to a case study on the Virginia coast, USA, highlight the importance of regional wave climate in determining how far-reaching the effects of nourishment activities will be and suggest that predictions of future changes in wave climate will be useful not only in determining where coordinated regional management strategies will be important, but also in forecasting required nourishment volumes.