Title

Barrier Islands: Coupling anthropogenic stability with ecological sustainability

Document Type

Article

Date of Original Version

11-1-2010

Abstract

Barrier islands provide a host of critical ecosystem services to heavily populated coastal regions of the world, yet they are quite vulnerable to ongoing sea level rise and a potential increase in the frequency and intensity of oceanic storms. These islands are being degraded at an alarming rate, in part because of anthropogenic attempts at stabilization. In this article, we outline a possible sustainability strategy that incorporates the natural degree of substrate instability on these sedimentary landscapes. We recommend placing the focus for managing barrier islands on maintaining ecosystem function and process development rather than emphasizing barrier islands as structural impediments to wave and storm energy. © 2010 the Coastal Education & Research Foundation (CERF).

Publication Title

Journal of Coastal Research

Volume

26

Issue

6

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