The dynamic nature of barrier beaches protect landward areas providing a buffer to storm waves and storm surge. Barrier beaches are also some of the locations most favored by locals and tourists alike and bring significant income to the economy. Although barrier beaches may seem relatively stable, they are constantly changing. Some people may wonder if barrier beaches can survive the effects of sea level rise, or will simply disappear. This new Extension Bulletin by Woods Hole Sea Grant and the Cape Cod Cooperative Extension, “Effect of Sea Level Rise on Barrier Beaches of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket”, describes how barrier beaches are formed and how they respond to the forces of sea level rise, tides and storm events. This understanding will help us to know what barrier beaches might look like in years to come and whether there are steps we can take now to preserve barrier beaches.
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