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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

A research and decision support framework to evaluate sea-level rise impacts in the northeastern U.S.


Previous approaches to quantify coastal vulnerability to sea-level rise have had major shortcomings, including the possibility that their underlying assumptions are not uniformly valid. This project conducted a study to distinguish the differing ways that coastal areas of the northeastern U.S. will respond to sea-level rise. This information will be used to develop a scientific research and decision-support program that addresses the cross-cutting and unique problems in these areas related to climate change and sea-level rise.

For more information, visit this USGS project page: Coastal Landscape Response to Sea-Level Rise Assessment for the Northeastern United States

Project Investigators

Nathaniel Plant, Dean Gesch (USGS)
& Radley Horton (Columbia University), North Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative



  • Northeast Climate Adaptation Science Center, February 2014, "Sea-level Rise, Coastal Change, and Decision Making in an Uncertain Future", R. Thieler, N. Plant, B. Gutierrez, E. Lentz, M. Fienen, J. Masterson, D. Gesch, S. Stippa, K. Gieder, S. Karpanty, A. Hecht, R. Horton, A. Milliken, K. McGarigal.
  • Woods Hole Research Center, Cape Cod and Islands Climate Change and Energy Conference, September 2013, "Sea-level rise and coastal change: likely impacts and possible responses", R. Thieler. (in-person presentation)
  • Presentation at Northeast Regional Oceans Council Meeting, November 2013: "A Research and Decision Support Framework to Evaluate Sea-Level Rise Impacts in the Northeastern U.S." E. Lentz, R. Thieler, N. Plant, S. Stippa, D. Gesch, and R. Horton.
  • Webinar to North Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative Coastal and Marine Technical Team, February 2013: "Research and Decision Support Framework to Evaluate Sea-Level Rise Impacts for the U.S. Atlantic Coast" E.Lentz, N. Plant, R. Thieler, A. Turecek.