Implications of sediment-vegetation interactions on post-storm recovery

Authors: Peter Tereszkiewicz*, University of South Carolina, Jean T. Ellis, University of South Carolina
Topics: Coastal and Marine, Geomorphology, Earth Science
Keywords: dunes, coastal management, coastal geomorphology, coastal jesus
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM
Room: Stones Throw 1 - Granite, Marriott, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Foredunes provide substantial protection for coastal communities, thus understanding and quantifying factors that enhance their growth is of paramount interest to coastal managers. The objective of this study is to examine the influence vegetation density has on landform response. A year-long dataset from the Isle of Palms, SC was examined following the impact of Hurricane Irma. Although Hurricane Irma did not make landfall in South Carolina, a 2 meter storm surge in tandem with a high tide induced substantial scarping to the dune system. Following the storm, a twenty meter foredune was monitored using five morphodynamic profile transects and two vegetation transects. Data were collected every three weeks for one year; the study site was impacted after one year by Hurricanes Florence and Michael. Digital elevation models (DEMs) were generated to quantify volumetric change. Vegetation coverage was quantified using supervised classification of in situ photographs. Sections of the DEMs that overlapped with vegetation quadrats were extracted and paired with the vegetation dataset for analysis. The pairing of vegetation density with volumetric change data provides a glimpse into sediment-vegetation interactions and showcases the application for system recovery.

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