Southeastern Section - 58th Annual Meeting (12-13 March 2009)
Paper No. 19-5
Presentation Time: 2:50 PM-3:10 PM


DORAN, Kara S., PLANT, Nathaniel, STOCKDON, Hilary, and THOMPSON, David, U.S. Geological Survey, 600 4th St. South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701,

The United States Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), is working to assess coastal vulnerability for the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) and Canaveral National Seashore. The area is similar to many developed coastal areas where there is a need to protect both man-made infrastructure and crucial wildlife habitat. Many of the launch sites and infrastructure of KSC are protected only by a narrow beach backed by low dunes. Dune overwash and shoreline retreat have put infrastructure at increasing risk of destruction from extreme storms. The coastal dunes also provide crucial habitat, serving as nesting grounds for endangered sea turtles. Coastal managers at NASA and FWS must consider what is required to protect the man-made infrastructure while also conserving the natural beach system and habitat.

Using lidar surveys from 1999 and 2006 the USGS created gridded digital elevation models (DEM) of the Space Center and National Seashore. The DEMs are used to extract dune position and elevation as well as the location of the shoreline. The dune elevations, coupled with parameterizations of storm surge and wave conditions, are used to assess the vulnerability of the coastline to inundation (the probability that the storm induced water level will exceed the maximum dune height). With two surveys spanning seven years, we compute shoreline change rates and dune erosion for the coast from the northern boundary of the National Seashore to Port Canaveral. By looking at the spatial and temporal variation of vulnerability and coastal change, we identify areas of high short-term and long-term risk. These results are being used by NASA and FWS to develop and implement their environmental management plan.

Southeastern Section - 58th Annual Meeting (12-13 March 2009)
General Information for this Meeting
Session No. 19
Quantifying Coastal Vulnerability to Geohazards: Methods, Results, and Recommendations
Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront Hotel: St. Petersburg 2
1:30 PM-5:30 PM, Friday, 13 March 2009

Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 41, No. 1, p. 50

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