THE DYNAMICS OF SHORELINE MANAGEMENT: AN APPROACH USING RENEWABLE RESOURCE ECONOMICS
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The combination of coastal development and naturally retreating shorelines in sensitive barrier island ecosystems has led to increased demand for shoreline management. The strategy of beach nourishment is commonly used to build an artificial beach in order to maintain recreational benefits and protect oceanfront property. A simulation model was developed to examine the costs and benefits associated with nourishment and to compare these with an alternate strategy of relocating coastal structures. This model uses principles of renewable resource economics to characterize the effect of the natural and anthropogenic rates of growth and decay on the net benefits of a beach. Hedonic property value studies of coastal areas were used to characterize some of the benefits of beaches. A regression analysis was performed to determine the structure of the cost curve for nourishment projects as a function of the volume of sand used. The results of the simulation model highlight the importance of considering the dynamics of these systems and the effects of each strategy over time. The relative efficiency of a repeated nourishment strategy is shown to depend on the frequency with which nourishments must be carried out. In addition, progress was made towards outlining the necessary components for modeling the optimal path of management decisions.
DepartmentNicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences
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