8.3 Advance knowledge on the physical coastal processes impacting natural and built environments.
Changes in climate are affecting physical coastal processes, with potential significant threats to infrastructure, food security, and biodiversity. Coastal erosion is leading to property and habitat loss, threatening the existence of coastal communities in their current physical locations. Increased storm surge and inundation of low-lying areas imperil some coastal communities. Changes to hydrology affect availability of freshwater, as well as food sources such as fish. Changes in the timing of physical conditions (e.g. sea ice loss, precipitation, water temperature) and biological conditions (e.g. plankton blooms, prey migration) are creating mismatches between prey, predators, and hunters, affecting both wildlife and humans.
Performance elements from the Arctic research plan
8.3.1 Improve understanding of coastal erosion and deposition, including related geomorphic changes due to permafrost degradation, reduced sea ice extent, storm surge, increased wave action, and sea level rise. This Element includes work by the USGS Coastal and Marine Geology Program, USGS Alaska Science Center, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and others.
8.3.2 Increase understanding of coastal freshwater hydrologic changes in rivers, lakes, snow, and permafrost through projects such as the Soil Climate Analysis Network (SCAN) soil moisture and temperature site monitoring.