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1 March 2012 Multitemporal Analysis of a Gravel-Dominated Coastline in the Central Canadian Arctic Archipelago
Dominique St-Hilaire-Gravel, Donald L. Forbes, Trevor Bell
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ST-HILAIRE-GRAVEL, D.; FORBES, D.L., and BELL, T., 2012. Multitemporal analysis of a gravel-dominated coastline in the central Canadian Arctic Archipelago.

This study assesses the stability of Arctic gravel coasts across a range of timescales, based on field and remote-sensing studies of three coastal sites near Resolute Bay, Nunavut. It considers shore-zone sensitivity to ice, wind, and wave forcing at storm-event and annual timescales within a longer-term context, including coastal emergence resulting from postglacial isostatic uplift partially counteracted by accelerating sea-level rise. Another long-term factor associated with climate change is the potential for increased seasonal depth of thaw in the beachface and nearshore. The coast in this area is ice bound on average for 10 months of the year, but the annual duration of ice cover has decreased over the past 30 years (1979–2009) by 0.95 d/y. A longer open-water season has implications for the number and timing of storm-wave events, with increased probability of storms impacting the coast later in the season when the seasonal thaw layer is approaching maximum thickness. Overall, shoreline progradation surpassed erosion in the Resolute area between 1958 and 2006, reflecting a combination of sediment supply and emergence. The coastal impacts of storms were found to be short lived and not necessarily indicative of longer-term trends. Gravel shorelines can be resilient in the face of intermittent storm impacts, but thresholds of stability in this high-latitude setting are poorly understood. If current trends of rising sea level, increasing open-water duration, and more frequent effective wave events continue, there is a heightened potential for more rapid coastal change in the region.

Dominique St-Hilaire-Gravel, Donald L. Forbes, and Trevor Bell "Multitemporal Analysis of a Gravel-Dominated Coastline in the Central Canadian Arctic Archipelago," Journal of Coastal Research 28(2), 421-441, (1 March 2012).
Received: 28 January 2011; Accepted: 24 June 2011; Published: 1 March 2012
changing sea level
coastal evolution
gravel beach
storm impacts
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