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Accessing Vulnerability due to Sea-Level Rise in Maui, Hawai'i using LiDAR Remote Sensing and GIS

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Title: Accessing Vulnerability due to Sea-Level Rise in Maui, Hawai'i using LiDAR Remote Sensing and GIS
Authors: Cooper, Hannah
Instructor: Chen, Qi
Issue Date: 09 May 2011
Publisher: University of Hawaii at Manoa
Abstract: Sea-level rise is threatening the Hawaiian Islands due to the vulnerability of infrastructure and population concentrated on the low-lying communities. In order to assess the impacts of sea-level rise, elevation data of high spatial resolution and vertical accuracy are required. The objective of this study is to use LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) remote sensing elevation data to produce a high-resolution digital elevation model (DEM) along the north and west coastal areas of Maui to integrate into GIS (Geographic Information System) to assess the impacts of sea-level rise. Two LiDAR datasets from USACE and NOAA were compared and calibrated using existing tidal benchmarks for the Kahului Harbor tide station to integrate LiDAR for Kahului and Lahaina. The LiDAR point elevation data was classified into ground returns for generating a DEM. The different sea-level rise scenarios of 0.75 to 1.9 m (Vermeer and Rahmstorf, 2009) were applied to the DEM, and the inundated area was spatially compared using GIS to assess the impacts with each scenario. This study shows that lands vulnerable to inundation under a sea-level rise scenario of 1.9 m to have a monetary value of about $440,000,000 for Kahului and $824,000,000 for Lahaina. The inundation maps produced from this research provides useful information for coastal managers and planners who are responsible for mitigating risks associated with the decisions to address the potential effects of sea-level rise.
Pages/Duration: 36 pages
Rights: All UHM Honors Projects 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:Honors Projects for Geography

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