Quantifying shoreline change at three coastal geomorphologies on Hawaiʻi Island

Authors: Rose Hart*, University of Hawaii - Hilo, Ryan L Perroy, Associate Professor of Geography and Environmental Science at the University of Hawaii- Hilo, Bethany Morrison, County of Hawaii Planning Department, Steven Colbert, Associate Professor of Marine Science at the University of Hawaii- Hilo, Charles H Fletcher, Professor of Geology and Geophysics at University of Hawaii- Manoa
Topics: Hazards and Vulnerability, Spatial Analysis & Modeling, Coastal and Marine
Keywords: coastal hazards, small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS), sea level rise, high resolution data
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Room: Balcony M, Marriott, River Tower Elevators, 4th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Despite its vast coastline and unique coastal ecosystems and resources, Hawai‘i Island has never had a comprehensive shoreline assessment of coastal vulnerabilities or any systematic monitoring of long-term shoreline change rates. Consequently, Hawai‘i Island is in a weak position for adapting to the potential impacts of sea-level rise (SLR) and coastal erosion. This project quantifies coastal vulnerabilities along three diverse shorelines found on Hawai‘i Island, to better predict and manage future changes due to a changing climate. Shoreline records, including historic aerial photographs and three-dimensional datasets collected from small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) have allowed us to quantify erosion and accrual at locations that represent calcareous beaches (Hāpuna State Beach Park), sea cliffs (Honoli‘i Beach Park), and subsiding coastal lava fields (Kapoho Tide Pools). These data are merged with SLR and subsidence projections to estimate future impacts to coastal communities and adjacent natural resources. Results from this study will be incorporated into the county's GIS database and made available to the public through the statewide GIS system. These data will provide a visualization tool for coastal communities and Hawaii County workers to understand local impacts of SLR and consider necessary adaptations.

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