Coastline responses to changing storm patterns
Slott, Jordan M.
Murray, A. Brad
Ashton, Andrew D.
Crowley, Thomas J.
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Researchers and coastal managers are pondering how accelerated sea-level rise and possibly intensified storms will affect shorelines. These issues are most often investigated in a cross-shore profile framework, fostering the implicit assumption that coastline responses will be approximately uniform in the alongshore direction. However, experiments with a recently developed numerical model of coastline change on a large spatial domain suggest that the shoreline responses to climate change could be highly variable. As storm and wave climates change, large-scale coastline shapes are likely to shift—causing areas of greatly accelerated coastal erosion to alternate with areas of considerable shoreline accretion. On complex-shaped coastlines, including cuspate-cape and spit coastlines, the alongshore variation in shoreline retreat rates could be an order of magnitude higher than the baseline retreat rate expected from sea-level rise alone.
Author Posting. © American Geophysical Union, 2006. This article is posted here by permission of American Geophysical Union for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Geophysical Research Letters 33 (2006): L18404, doi:10.1029/2006GL027445.