Home Archived October 29, 2018
(i)

South Florida Information Access (SOFIA)


publications > paper > the role of mangroves in attenuating storm surges > abstract

The role of mangroves in attenuating storm surges

Keqi Zhang a,b,*, Huiqing Liu b, Yuepeng Li b, Hongzhou Xu b, Jian Shen c, Jamie Rhome d, Thomas J. Smith III e

a Department of Earth and Environment, Florida International University, 11200 SW 8th Street, Miami, FL 33199, USA
b International Hurricane Research Center, Florida International University, 11200 SW 8th Street, Miami, FL 33199, USA
c Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary, Gloucester Point, VA 23062, USA
d National Hurricane Center, Storm Surge Unit, 11691 SW 17th Street, Miami, FL Miami, FL 33165, USA
e U.S. Geological Survey, Southeast Ecological Science Center, 600 Fourth Street South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701, USA

* Corresponding author. Department of Earth and Environment, Florida International University, 11200 SW 8th Street, Miami FL 33199, USA
E-mail address: zhangk@fiu.edu (K. Zhang)

Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, Volumes 102-103, 1 May 2012, Pages 11-23, ISSN 0272-7714, 10.1016/j.ecss.2012.02.021. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. Pre-print version posted here with permission from Elsevier.

Abstract

>Abstract
Introduction
Setting of Study Area & Data
CEST Storm Surge Model & Settings
Simulation of Wilma's Surge & Model Verification
Sensitivity Analysis of Surge Attenuation
Discussion
Conclusions
Acknowledgments
References
Figures, Tables
& Equations

Field observations and numerical simulations indicate that the 6-to-30-km-wide mangrove forest along the Gulf Coast of South Florida effectively attenuated storm surges from a Category 3 hurricane, Wilma, and protected the inland wetland by reducing an inundation area of 1800 km2 and restricting surge inundation inside the mangrove zone. The surge amplitude decreases at a rate of 40-50 cm/km across the mangrove forest and at a rate of 20 cm/km across the areas with a mixture of mangrove islands with open water. In contrast, the amplitudes of storm surges at the front of the mangrove zone increase by about 10-30% because of the "blockage" of mangroves to surge water, which can cause greater impacts on structures at the front of mangroves than the case without mangroves. The mangrove forest can also protect the wetlands behind the mangrove zone against surge inundation from a Category 5 hurricane with a fast forward speed of 11.2 m/s (25 mph). However, the forest cannot fully attenuate storm surges from a Category 5 hurricane with a slow forward speed of 2.2 m/s (5 mph) and reduced surges can still affect the wetlands behind the mangrove zone. The effects of widths of mangrove zones on reducing surge amplitudes are nonlinear with large reduction rates (15-30%) for initial width increments and small rates (<5%) for subsequent width increments.

Keywords: storm surges, mangroves, bioshields, Hurricane Wilma, surge modeling


Introduction >


Related information:

SOFIA Project: Dynamics of Land Margin Ecosystems: Historical Change, Hydrology, Vegetation, Sediment, and Climate

SOFIA Project: Past and Future Impacts of Sea Level Rise on Coastal Habitats and Species in the Greater Everglades (FISCHS)



| Disclaimer | Privacy Statement | Accessibility |

U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey
This page is: http://sofia.usgs.gov/publications/papers/mang_storm_surges/index.html
Comments and suggestions? Contact: Heather Henkel - Webmaster
Last updated: 04 September, 2013 @ 02:04 PM (KP)