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Temporal and spatial patterns of sea-level rise impacts to coastal wetlands and other ecosystems

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Item Summary

Title: Temporal and spatial patterns of sea-level rise impacts to coastal wetlands and other ecosystems
Authors: Kane, Haunani Hiilani
Keywords: sea level rise
critical elevation
digital elevation model
show 4 moreexpert judgment
adaptive management

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Issue Date: May 2014
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [May 2014]
Abstract: Increased water levels, erosion, salinity, and flooding associated with sea-level rise threaten coastal and wetland habitats of endangered waterbirds, sea turtles, monk seals, and migratory shorebirds. As sea-level rises the greatest challenge will be prioritizing management actions in response to impacts. We provide decision makers with two solutions to adaptively manage the impacts of sea-level rise and apply these methods to three coastal wetland environments at Keālia National Wildlife Refuge (south Maui), Kanaha State Wildlife Sanctuary (north Maui), and James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge (north O'ahu). Firstly, due to the low gradient of most coastal plain environments, the rate of sea-level rise impact will rapidly accelerate once the height of the sea surface exceeds a critical elevation. We calculate a local sea-level rise critical elevation and joint uncertainty that marks the end of the slow phase of flooding and the onset of rapid flooding. This critical transition period provides an important planning target for achieving adaptive management. Secondly, within highly managed coastal areas, landscape vulnerability is related to the site-specific goals of coastal stakeholders. We develop a threat-ranking process that defines vulnerability from a management perspective by identifying those parameters that best characterize how sea-level rise will impact decision maker's ability to accomplish mandated goals and objectives. We also provide maps of sea-level rise impacts for each wetland that characterize these two solutions as well as highlight the geographic distribution of potential vulnerabilities. The tools developed here can be used as a guide to initiate and implement adaptation strategies that meet the challenges of sea-level rise in advance of the largest impacts.
Description: M.S. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2014.
Includes bibliographical references.
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:M.S. - Geology and Geophysics

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