BOSTON HARBOR ISLANDS
Inspiring Climate Change Adaptation through Exposure Assessment
This project, funded by the National Park Service through their Climate Change Response Program is focused on assessing the exposure of natural, cultural and infrastructre resources on the Boston Harbor Islands and how this may change in the future.
The Boston Harbor Islands were formed during multiple periods of glaciation, and their sediment has been reworked by waves and currents into the islands we see today, which comprise drumlin cores anchoring low-lying spits and barriers, sheltering wetland areas in their lee. Exposed bluffs on the island erode through different mechanisms depending on their exposure to wind and wave energy. We are working to document the retreat rates of the eroding bluffs and determine the main drivers of variability in erosion rates. We also consider the impact of climate change on erosion rates as the rate of sea-level rise accelerates and severe storms become more frequent.
This project involves several field and laboratory components.
GROUND-PENETRATING RADAR (GPR) INVESTIGATIONS
Ground-penetrating radar is used to investigate the subsurface layers, revealing the geologic history of a region and telling the story of its formation.