By Randy Johnson, Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe Habitat Program
For a variety of reasons, humans are deeply attached to and highly value accretionary shoreforms, i.e. sand and gravel beaches, spits, and other low-angle, non-rocky shoreline features. These have also been referred to as “drift babies” because they are products of drifting sediment and, in geologic terms, they can never grow old.
By Kevin Zerbe
Climate impacts are becoming more apparent across the country, including in coastal areas dealing with sea level rise, higher rates of erosion, more frequent coastal storms, and so on. While attributing any single event to climate change is still a bit tricky, the larger trend of increased coastal hazards is in-line with our understanding of climate impacts. For much of the country, climate change has moved into a phase where its impacts are no longer forecasts. We are now beginning to see the impacts of climate change affect our daily lives, with recurrent hazards that need to be addressed sooner than later.
By Hansi Hals
There is a small, unnamed sand spit that I can see from my office window overlooking Sequim Bay. It is rare for high tides to reach across it, even partially, but now the entire spit is submerged. A few tufts of vegetation and a curved line on the water surface show me the spit is still there— it’s just underwater because our recent winter weather has created a storm surge. The snow and storms, severe enough to close I-90 because of avalanche hazard, have everybody talking— even the tide is reacting! And they’re providing a picture of how higher sea levels and the storm surges that come with them may change our shoreline.
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