Scaling coastal dune elevation changes across storm-impact regimes

Geophysical Research Letters
By: , and 



Extreme storms drive change in coastal areas, including destruction of dune systems that protect coastal populations. Data from four extreme storms impacting four geomorphically diverse barrier islands are used to quantify dune elevation change. This change is compared to storm characteristics to identify variability in dune response, improve understanding of morphological interactions, and provide estimates of scaling parameters applicable for future prediction. Locations where total water levels did not exceed the dune crest experienced elevation change of less than 10%. Regions where wave-induced water levels exceeded the dune crest exhibited a positive linear relationship between the height of water over the dune and the dune elevation change. In contrast, a negative relationship was observed when surge exceeded the dune crest. Results indicate that maximum dune elevation, and therefore future vulnerability, may be more impacted from lower total water levels where waves drive sediment over the dune rather than surge-dominated flooding events.

Study Area

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Scaling coastal dune elevation changes across storm-impact regimes
Series title Geophysical Research Letters
DOI 10.1002/2014GL059616
Volume 41
Issue 8
Year Published 2014
Language English
Publisher American Geophysical Union
Contributing office(s) St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center
Description 8 p.
Larger Work Type Article
Larger Work Subtype Journal Article
Larger Work Title Geophysical Research Letters
First page 2899
Last page 2906
Country United States
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