Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island

The objective of this study was to assess the effect of shoreline retreat and dune erosion on coastal flooding in a case study located in the southern coast of Rhode Island, USA. Using an extensive dataset collected during 2011, an ADCIRC model was developed to simulate the propagation of storm surg...

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Main Authors: Alex Shaw, Mohammad Reza Hashemi, Malcolm Spaulding, Bryan Oakley, Chris Baxter
Format: Article
Language:English
Published: MDPI AG 2016-12-01
Series:Journal of Marine Science and Engineering
Subjects:
Online Access:http://www.mdpi.com/2077-1312/4/4/85
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spelling doaj-a80c6bbefcb347eb982466132f1cc1d32021-04-02T03:53:38ZengMDPI AGJournal of Marine Science and Engineering2077-13122016-12-01448510.3390/jmse4040085jmse4040085Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode IslandAlex Shaw0Mohammad Reza Hashemi1Malcolm Spaulding2Bryan Oakley3Chris Baxter4Department of Ocean Engineering, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI 02882, USADepartment of Ocean Engineering, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI 02882, USADepartment of Ocean Engineering, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI 02882, USAEnvironmental Earth Science Department, Eastern Connecticut State University, Willimantic, CT 06226, USADepartment of Ocean Engineering, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI 02882, USAThe objective of this study was to assess the effect of shoreline retreat and dune erosion on coastal flooding in a case study located in the southern coast of Rhode Island, USA. Using an extensive dataset collected during 2011, an ADCIRC model was developed to simulate the propagation of storm surge in the coastal areas, including coastal inlets and ponds. A simplified methodology, based on the geological assessment of historical trends of the shoreline retreat and dune erosion in this area, was incorporated in the model to represent coastal erosion. The results showed that for extreme storms (e.g., a 100-year event), where coastal dunes are overtopped and low-lying areas are flooded, the flooding extent is not significantly sensitive to coastal erosion. However, failure of the dunes leads to a significant increase of the flooding extent for smaller storms. Substantial dampening of the storm surge elevation in coastal ponds for moderate and small storms was associated with coastal inlets connecting to coastal ponds which are often not resolved in regional surge models. The shoreline change did not significantly affect the extent of flooding. It was also shown that the accuracy of a storm surge model highly depends on its ability to resolve coastal inlets, which is critical for reliable storm surge predictions in areas with inlet-basin systems.http://www.mdpi.com/2077-1312/4/4/85dune erosioncoastal pondsstorm surgecoastal flooding
collection DOAJ
language English
format Article
sources DOAJ
author Alex Shaw
Mohammad Reza Hashemi
Malcolm Spaulding
Bryan Oakley
Chris Baxter
spellingShingle Alex Shaw
Mohammad Reza Hashemi
Malcolm Spaulding
Bryan Oakley
Chris Baxter
Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island
Journal of Marine Science and Engineering
dune erosion
coastal ponds
storm surge
coastal flooding
author_facet Alex Shaw
Mohammad Reza Hashemi
Malcolm Spaulding
Bryan Oakley
Chris Baxter
author_sort Alex Shaw
title Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island
title_short Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island
title_full Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island
title_fullStr Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island
title_full_unstemmed Effect of Coastal Erosion on Storm Surge: A Case Study in the Southern Coast of Rhode Island
title_sort effect of coastal erosion on storm surge: a case study in the southern coast of rhode island
publisher MDPI AG
series Journal of Marine Science and Engineering
issn 2077-1312
publishDate 2016-12-01
description The objective of this study was to assess the effect of shoreline retreat and dune erosion on coastal flooding in a case study located in the southern coast of Rhode Island, USA. Using an extensive dataset collected during 2011, an ADCIRC model was developed to simulate the propagation of storm surge in the coastal areas, including coastal inlets and ponds. A simplified methodology, based on the geological assessment of historical trends of the shoreline retreat and dune erosion in this area, was incorporated in the model to represent coastal erosion. The results showed that for extreme storms (e.g., a 100-year event), where coastal dunes are overtopped and low-lying areas are flooded, the flooding extent is not significantly sensitive to coastal erosion. However, failure of the dunes leads to a significant increase of the flooding extent for smaller storms. Substantial dampening of the storm surge elevation in coastal ponds for moderate and small storms was associated with coastal inlets connecting to coastal ponds which are often not resolved in regional surge models. The shoreline change did not significantly affect the extent of flooding. It was also shown that the accuracy of a storm surge model highly depends on its ability to resolve coastal inlets, which is critical for reliable storm surge predictions in areas with inlet-basin systems.
topic dune erosion
coastal ponds
storm surge
coastal flooding
url http://www.mdpi.com/2077-1312/4/4/85
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