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1 July 2015 Shoreline Response to Sea-Level Rise on the Southwest Coast of Florida
J.R. Houston
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Houston, J.R., 2015. Shoreline response to sea-level rise on the southwest coast of Florida.

The state of Florida has a unique database of shoreline position measured about every 300 m and dating back to the mid-1800s that presents an opportunity to determine the effects of sea-level rise on shoreline position. In addition to sea-level rise (Bruun rule initially assumed), data are available on the southwest coast of Florida for other factors contributing to shoreline change, including beach nourishment, inlet shoal change, and longshore sediment transport. The sum of these factors should have caused significant shoreline recession, but instead the average shoreline position of this coast was stable during the early period from the 1800s to the 1970s (prior to beach nourishment) and strongly accretive from the 1800s to the 2000s. When the Bruun rule is used, shoreline change predicted by the sum of the factors compares poorly with measured data, but it compares quite well when the Dean equilibrium concept is used. The Dean equilibrium concept says that under wave action and with sufficient available offshore sand, shorelines will advance with sea-level rise due to onshore sand transport. Long-term shoreline change data for most of the Florida east coast and the Dutch central coast also support the Dean equilibrium concept. The source of the onshore sand transport in southwest Florida is identified. Sea-level rise results in long-term shoreline advance rather than recession for shorelines with sufficient onshore sand movement from beyond closure depth to the active profile, probably during episodic storms.

© Coastal Education & Research Foundation 2015
J.R. Houston "Shoreline Response to Sea-Level Rise on the Southwest Coast of Florida," Journal of Coastal Research 31(4), 777-789, (1 July 2015).
Received: 20 August 2014; Accepted: 17 September 2014; Published: 1 July 2015
Coastal accretion
coastal erosion
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