Evaluation of storms through the lens of erosion potential along the New Jersey, USA coast
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Evaluation of storms through the lens of erosion potential along the New Jersey, USA coast

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Details:

  • Journal Title:
    Coastal Engineering
  • Sea Grant Program:
  • Description:
    Coastal erosion is driven by both a storm's erosion potential and by an area's vulnerability. Therefore, the problem of estimating impacts can be approached in two-step. The first includes an assessment of erosion potential based on readily available storm parameters, while the second combines this information with highly localized parameters, describing vulnerability, to more directly predict local impacts. The work presented in this paper focuses on this first step, where a storm erosion potential climatology is developed by analyzing historical storms and is then utilized to identify historic patterns. Specifically, storms which have impacted the New Jersey coast over the past several decades are reevaluated using the Storm Erosion Index (SEI), developed by Miller and Livermont (2008), which considers the three primary storm-related drivers of coastal erosion (wave height, water level, and storm duration). These storms are assessed at thirteen shoreline segments defined along New Jersey's Atlantic coast from a 34 year-period (1980–2013) when concurrent wave and water level data is available. Approximately 130 unique storms are identified with the top three being the December 1992 nor'easter, the November 2009 Veteran's Day Storm, and Hurricane Sandy in October 2012, each having an estimated return period of greater than 15 years. The resulting climatology is found to exhibit several interesting spatial and temporal trends. Both portions of the state as well as months of the year that have historically experienced more storms and/or higher cumulative SEI (over the 34 years) are identified. While analysis of the climatology has also identified periods of reduced storm activity and those of intensified conditions, future monitoring is suggested to assess whether these patterns are persistent or related to climatic variations with cycles longer than can be captured by the thirty years included in this study.
  • Source:
    Coastal Engineering 158: 103699
  • Document Type:
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  • Rights Information:
    Accepted Manuscript
  • Compliance:
    Submitted
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