U.S. Department of the Interior
The scientific literature addressing human impacts on the geomorphological processes of beaches and dunes is very uneven, and in most cases there are few publications pertaining specifically to Fire Island. Therefore, information from other sites will be used to provide perspective and to assist in the assessment of beach and dune response to types of human activity practiced on Fire Island. This is not to be a history of human manipulations, and will not exhaustively cover ecological or social impacts, but rather it will focus on several of the actions conducted by humans on Fire Island and describe the activity with regard to its interaction with the ambient coastal geomorphology. Importantly, the interaction is a complex activity occurring at a variety of spatial and temporal scales that require a broad perspective to be appreciated and managed. This report will focus on the human activities affecting the coastal foredune. The foredune is a primary locus of human interface with the natural system and it is the site of the greatest opportunity to influence the degree of intervention of processes and to maintain the integrity of the barrier island system.
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