2004 Denver Annual Meeting (November 7–10, 2004)

Paper No. 9
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM


SLIKO, Jennifer L.1, NEIDORODA, Alan W.2, HATCHETT, Lyle2 and DONOGHUE, Joseph F.3, (1)Department of Geosciences/Florida State University, URS Corporation, Tallahassee, FL 32306, (2)URS Corporation, Tallahassee, FL 32303, (3)Department of Geosciences, Florida State Univ, Tallahassee, FL 32306, jdonoghu@mailer.fsu.edu

Many individual sedimentologic and geophysical studies have been completed on the Florida Gulf coast, providing detailed examinations of small portions of the inner continental shelf. The Reconnaissance Offshore Sand Search database (ROSS) has been developed by URS Corporation for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to combine all known studies into one database, accessible at http://ross.urs-tally.com/. The northwest Florida Gulf Coast is complete, however the database is expanding to include the southwest Florida Gulf Coast. This database includes government funded, academic, and privately funded research, combined to create an online searchable database for use by academics, government officials, and the general public. In addition to a bibliography, the database is incorporating sediment grab samples, sediment cores, and geophysical data to create a comprehensive view of the southwest Florida inner continental shelf. This data will be searchable in both tabular form and spatially, through ArcIMS (Arc Interactive Map Server). By combining multiple studies, the entire southwest Gulf coast can be examined through the ROSS database to provide a better understanding of the recent Holocene history of the regional coast and shelf, including the geologic origins of barrier islands, the timing of possible sea-level high stands, and the relationships among sea-level rise, barrier island migration, and bedrock topography. This database will also be used as a research tool for coastal managers in regulating beach nourishment programs, an activity that has amounted to over $700 million in Florida. As the societal demand for renourishment activities increases, the supply of suitable, easily accessible sand has been steadily decreasing. The ROSS database, providing a more detailed knowledge of the extent of coastal and nearshore sand bodies, will serve to focus any discussion of this coastal resource. A comprehensive understanding of the cost-benefits of nourishment for specific coastal locations can help policy-makers and planners determine if beach nourishment is a better solution (environmentally and financially) than other alternatives.