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J Environ Sci Health A Tox Hazard Subst Environ Eng. 2013;48(4):453-63. doi: 10.1080/10934529.2013.729924.

Impact of sea level rise on tide gate function.

Author information

1
Department of Environmental Science, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA. s.p.m.walsh@gmail.com

Abstract

Sea level rise resulting from climate change and land subsidence is expected to severely impact the duration and associated damage resulting from flooding events in tidal communities. These communities must continuously invest resources for the maintenance of existing structures and installation of new flood prevention infrastructure. Tide gates are a common flood prevention structure for low-lying communities in the tidal zone. Tide gates close during incoming tides to prevent inundation from downstream water propagating inland and open during outgoing tides to drain upland areas. Higher downstream mean sea level elevations reduce the effectiveness of tide gates by impacting the hydraulics of the system. This project developed a HEC-RAS and HEC-HMS model of an existing tide gate structure and its upland drainage area in the New Jersey Meadowlands to simulate the impact of rising mean sea level elevations on the tide gate's ability to prevent upstream flooding. Model predictions indicate that sea level rise will reduce the tide gate effectiveness resulting in longer lasting and deeper flood events. The results indicate that there is a critical point in the sea level elevation for this local area, beyond which flooding scenarios become dramatically worse and would have a significantly negative impact on the standard of living and ability to do business in one of the most densely populated areas of America.

PMID:
23379951
DOI:
10.1080/10934529.2013.729924
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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