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The USGS updated its shoreline-change rates for Alaska’s north coast between the U.S.-Canadian Border and Icy Cape as part of the National Assessment of Coastal Change Hazards.

The previous assessment included data for two time periods, circa-1940s and circa-2000s. The update includes data from two additional time periods, circa-1980s and circa-2010s. The updated assessment confirms that Alaska’s north coast is dominantly erosional, with 84 percent showing shoreline retreat over the long term (1940s–2010s) and 77 percent over the short term (1980s–2010s). Average rates of change increased over the short term and are higher on the Beaufort Sea coast than the Chukchi Sea coast. Read details in USGS Open-File Report 2017-1107. View shoreline change rates along the north coast of Alaska, as well as other U.S. shorelines, in the USGS Coastal Change Hazards Portal.


Map of Alaska’s north coast showing color-coded rates of shoreline erosion from 2015 publication.
Map of the north coast of Alaska study area showing color-coded shoreline change rates, the boundaries of the ten analysis regions (dashed boxes and numbers), and key geographic locations discussed in the report titled, "National Assessment of Shoreline Change— Historical Shoreline Change Along the North Coast of Alaska, U.S.-Canadian Border to Icy Cape", USGS Open-File Report 2015-1048.(Public domain.)

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