The study goal is to document the damage and response of coastal ecosystems, including wetland and maritime forests, marshes, and submerged aquatic vegetation, to Hurricane Sandy. In reaching that goal, we will produce maps and remote sensing technologies for identifying those coastal resources that are most vulnerable to degradation and propose methods for resource management mitigation before irreparable loss. Our objective is not simply the identification of change but to build a system that provides the information needed for development and implementation of a comprehensive plan for maintenance or progressive restoration with quantifiable metrics and timely and cost-effective monitoring techniques built upon remote sensing techniques and operational analyses. In essence, we will demonstrate how remote sensing data sources can be combined and analyzed to detect the onset of abnormal change and track its progression so that adaptive management can intervene before irreversible decline and ultimate loss.
The study is separated by location, ecological unit type, and flushing dynamics: (1) New Jersey coastal marshes, (2) Delmarva barrier island and backbarrier marshes (Long-term Ecological Research sites), (3) cypress and maritime forests, and (4) lagoon submerged aquatic vegetation.