Coastal Louisiana landscape and storm surge evolution: 1850–2110
Storm surge models are constructed to represent the Louisiana coastal landscape circa 1850, 1890, 1930, 1970, 1990, 2010, 2030, 2050, 2070, 2090, and 2110. Historical maps are utilized to develop models with past landscapes while a continuation of recent landscape trends is assumed for future models. The same suite of meteorological wind and pressure fields is simulated with each storm surge model. Simulation results for 1850 and 1890 demonstrate minimal change in storm surge characteristics along the Louisiana coast. A mean maximum storm surge height increase of 0.26 m from 1930 to 2010 is quantified within the sediment-abundant Atchafalaya-Vermilion coastal basin, while increases of 0.34 m and 0.41 m are quantified within sediment-starved Terrebonne and Barataria, respectively. Future mean maximum storm surge heights increase across these three coastal basins by 0.67 m, 0.55 m, and 0.75 m, indicating negligible differences from 2010 to 2110, regardless of sediment availability. Results indicate that past changes in the Louisiana coastal landscape and storm surge were a consequence of local land and river management decisions while future changes are dominated by relative (subsidence and eustatic) sea level rise. Projecting landscape and surge changes beyond 50 years could aide policy makers as they work to enhance resilience across coastal Louisiana. Similar analyses could be conducted for other deltas across the world, such as the Ganges, that are experiencing challenges comparable to those of the Mississippi River Delta.
KeywordsWetland loss Land water ratio ADCIRC Coastal flood risk Hydrologic unit code Storm surge
This work also used high-performance computing at Louisiana State University (LSU) and the Louisiana Optical Network Initiative (LONI).
This research was supported by the Coastal SEES program of the National Science Foundation (NSF) (EAR-1533979 and EAR-1427389), the Louisiana Sea Grant Laborde Chair, and the Louisiana Geological Survey.
Compliance with ethical standards
The statements and conclusions are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of NSF, Louisiana Sea Grant, LSU, or LONI. This work used the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE), which is supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) grant ACI-1053575. This publication also made use of data sets provided by the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) which were originally produced to inform the development of the 2017 Coastal Master Plan. To implement coastal forests for mesh years 1850 and 1890, this publication made use of digitized maps of coastal Louisiana provided by the Williams Research Center of the Historic New Orleans Collection located in New Orleans, LA.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
- Barras J et al. (2003) Historical and projected coastal Louisiana land changes: 1978-2050 vol 03. U.S. Geological SurveyGoogle Scholar
- Bilskie MV, Hagen SC, Irish JL (2019) Development of return period stillwater floodplains for the northern Gulf of Mexico under the coastal dynamics of sea level rise. J Waterw Port Coast 145:04019001. https://doi.org/10.1061/(Asce)Ww.1943-5460.0000468 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Blain CA, Westerink JJ, Luettich RA (1998) Grid convergence studies for the prediction of hurricane storm surge. Int J Numer Methods Fluids 26:369–401. https://doi.org/10.1002/(Sici)1097-0363(19980228)26:4<369::Aid-Fld624>3.0.Co;2-0 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Boesch DF, Josselyn MN, Mehta AJ, Morris JT, Nuttle WK, Simenstad CA, Swift DJ (1994) Scientific assessment of coastal wetland loss, restoration and management in Louisiana. Journal of Coastal Research:i-103Google Scholar
- Church JA et al (2013) Sea level change. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USAGoogle Scholar
- Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (2017) Louisiana’s comprehensive master plan for a sustainable coast. CPRA, Baton Rouge, LAGoogle Scholar
- Coastal Protection, Restoration Authority (2018) Barrier island status report: fiscal year 2020 Annual Plan. Rouge, BatonGoogle Scholar
- Couvillion BR et al. (2011) Land area change in coastal Louisiana from 1932 to 2010. U.S. department of the Interior: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3164, scale 1:265,000, Reston, VirginiaGoogle Scholar
- Cox AT, Greenwood JA, Cardone VJ, Swail VR (1995) An interactive objective kinematic analysis system. Alberta, CanadaGoogle Scholar
- Day JW, Kemp GP, Reed DJ, Cahoon DR, Boumans RM, Suhayda JM, Gambrell R (2011) Vegetation death and rapid loss of surface elevation in two contrasting Mississippi delta salt marshes: the role of sedimentation, autocompaction and sea-level rise. Ecol Eng 37:229–240. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecoleng.2010.11.021 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Dunbar JB, Britsch LD, Kemp EB (1992) Land loss rates. Report 3. Louisiana Coastal Plain (No. WES/TR/GL/90-2). Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station Geotechnical Lab, Vicksburg, MSGoogle Scholar
- Fischbach JR et al (2017) 2017 Coastal master plan modeling: attachment C3-25: storm surge and risk assessment. Final Version, Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, Baton Rouge, LAGoogle Scholar
- Harrison R (2015) Impact of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (giww) on freight flows in the Texas-Louisiana mega regionGoogle Scholar
- Louisiana Coastal Wetlands Conservation and Restoration Task Force (1993) Louisiana coastal wetlands restoration plan: main report and environmental impact statement. Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LouisianaGoogle Scholar
- Luettich Jr. RA, Westerink JJ, Scheffner NW (1992) ADCIRC: an advanced three-dimensional circulation model for shelves, coasts and estuaries vol DRP-92-6. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, ERDC-ITL-K, 3909 Halls Ferry Rd., Vicksburg, MS 39180-6199Google Scholar
- Luettich R, Westerink J (2004) Formulation and numerical implementation of the 2D/3D ADCIRC finite element model version 44.XX:74Google Scholar
- Massey TC, Wamsley TV, Cialone MA (2011) Coastal storm modeling-system integration solutions to coastal disasters 2011:99-108Google Scholar
- Massey TC, Ratcliff JJ, Cialone MA (2015) North Atlantic Coast Comprehensive Study (NACCS) storm simulation and statistical analysis: part II-high performance semi-automated production system. The Proceedings of the Coastal Sediments 2015Google Scholar
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (2018) Tides and currents. Center for Operational Oceanographic Products and Services. https://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/. Accessed 3/4/2018 2018
- Nienhuis JH, Tornqvist TE, Jankowski KL, Fernandes AM, Keogh ME (2017) A new subsidence map for coastal Louisiana GSA Today 27Google Scholar
- Paola C et al (2011) Natural processes in delta restoration: application to the Mississippi Delta. Ann Rev Mar Sci 3:67–91. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-marine-120709-142856 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Stocker TF et al. (2013) Intergovernmental panel on climate change, working group I contribution to the IPCC fifth assessment report (AR5).Google Scholar
- Sweet WV, Kopp RE, Weaver CP, Obeyesekera J, Horton RM, Thieler ER, Zervas C (2017) Global and regional sea level rise scenarios for the United States. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Silver Spring, MarylandGoogle Scholar
- Twilley RR, Couvillion BR, Hossain I, Kaiser C, Owens AB, Steyer GD, Visser JM (2008) Coastal Louisiana Ecosystem Assessment and Restoration Program: the role of ecosystem forecasting in evaluating restoration planning in the Mississippi River Deltaic Plain. Am Fish Soc Symp 64:29–46Google Scholar
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (2008) Louisiana coastal protection and restoration technical report. USACE, Vicksburg, MississippiGoogle Scholar
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (2009) Louisiana coastal protection and restoration (LACPR) final technical report. New Orleans District, New Orleans, LAGoogle Scholar
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (2016) The Mississippi River. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. http://www.mvn.usace.army.mil/Missions/Mississippi-River-Flood-Control/Mississippi-River-Tributaries/. Accessed 12/8/2017 2017
- U.S. Geological Survey (2017a) Hydrologic Unit Maps. U.S. Department of the Interior. https://water.usgs.gov/GIS/huc.html. Accessed 7/11/2018 2018
- U.S. Geological Survey (2017b) Topoview. U.S. Department of the Interior. https://ngmdb.usgs.gov/topoview/viewer/#4/40.01/-100.06. Accessed 12-27-2017
- Ulm M, Arns A, Wahl T, Meyers SD, Luther ME, Jensen J (2016) The impact of a Barrier Island loss on extreme events in the Tampa Bay. Front Mar Sci 3Google Scholar
- Wells JT, Chinburg SJ, Coleman JM (1984) Development of Atchafalaya River deltas: generic analysis. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg, MSGoogle Scholar