Through processes like dune erosion, overwash, and inundation, storms reshape our nation's coastline. During hurricanes changes can be significant, making coastal resources and communities vulnerable to waves, surge, and flooding.
Real-time and scenario-based forecasts of storm-induced coastal change, as well as the supporting data, are provided to support management of coastal infrastructure, resources, and safety. Such data have been developed for the majority of the US East and Gulf coasts and are provided on our Coastal Change Hazards web portal. The tools developed to provide these forecasts for relative linear, low-slope sandy shorelines of the US East and Gulf coasts, however, are not applicable to the steeper, complex coastline of Puerto Rico that is lined by coral reefs.
This project will expand our well-established real-time and scenario-based forecasts of storm-induced coastal change for Puerto Rico. The goal of this project is to test a suite of methods to determine how to best forecast coastal change and flooding for the steep, complex, coral reef-lined coastline of Puerto Rico and then develop real-time and scenario-based forecasts of coastal change and flooding for Puerto Rico.
The testing will be done with the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez at a number of field sites by deploying oceanographic instruments to measure waves and water levels and land-based video camera systems to record the resulting wave-driven run-up, flooding, and coastal change. Those data will then be compared to the output of different coastal storm-driven flood models to evaluate the pros and cons of the different methodologies. We will also be working with the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez to apply such models to develop the real-time and scenario-based forecasts of coastal change and flooding for Puerto Rico.
All of these data will be made available on our Coastal Change Hazards web portal for web viewing and download to provide actionable information to homeowners, coastal communities, and managers of public and private properties to improve resiliency for storm-induced coastal hazards.