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Connecticut Shoreline Change Analysis – 100 Years of Erosion and Accretion

Published on Friday, August 21, 2015

Connecticut Shoreline Change Analysis – 100 Years of Erosion and Accretion

Connecticut Sea Grant

An important part of coastal resilience is understanding the dynamics of the shoreline, particularly, “How has the shoreline changed?” With funding from NOAA and National Sea Grant, a team from Connecticut Sea Grant, UConn CLEAR, UConn Extension and Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection took on an ambitious project designed to understand and quantify shoreline change in Connecticut over the last 100 years. Using maps dating from the 1880s, more recent GIS datasets, and a USGS software program, shoreline features were analyzed along the entire Connecticut shoreline using geologic and political boundaries.  Results identify areas of change (both eroding and accreting), by quantifying not only how much the shoreline has moved, but also the rate of change. A summary of overall trends for Connecticut is also provided. For select sites, a shoreline change viewer allows one to watch the chronological shoreline change from the 1880's to 2006.

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Juliana Barrett, PhD - Associate Extenstion Educator
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