Geomorphic Coastal Change

Coastline with beaches and islands.
Shoreline habitats are susceptible to disturbance due to storms, erosion, tsunamis, and retreating glaciers. These disturbances impact the species that depend on the terrestrial and nearshore marine ecosystems impacted.

NPS/Jim Pfeiffenberger

Alaska has over 6,500 miles of coastline and parks in southwest Alaska include a range of coastal habitats, including salt marshes, mudflats, and tidewater glaciers. Changes in shoreline geomorphology affect the composition, relative abundance, and distribution of these habitat types and the species that depend on them. Potential disturbances to these ecosystems include sea level rise, increased erosion, and tsunamis.

While not actively monitored, coastal geomorphology in Southwest Alaska has been characterized through mapping and photo interpretation.

Contact: Peter Kirchner

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Last updated: June 18, 2018