EPA Science Inventory

Marsh accretion in Oregon estuaries using the marker horizon method and implications of sea level rise

Citation:

MOCHON COLLURA, T., C. A. BROWN, AND R. King. Marsh accretion in Oregon estuaries using the marker horizon method and implications of sea level rise. Presented at Pacific Estuarine Research Society Annual Meeting, Anacortes, WA, April 12 - 14, 2012.

Description:

Sea level rise and the ability of marshes to keep up with this rise have been extensively studied on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the US; however, there is limited information available for marshes in the Pacific Northwest. Our research focuses on measuring marsh sediment accretion using the feldspar clay, marker-horizon method along with marsh characteristics including plant species community composition, elevation, sediment carbon and nitrogen content, and bulk density. We established 125 plots in eight Oregon estuaries from Tillamook Bay to Coquille Bay. We measured mean accretion rates of 6.9 mm/yr (n = 44 cores, SD 4.59) for low marsh plots and 2.9 mm/yr (n = 21 cores, SD 2.04) for high marsh plots. Maximum accretion rates were measured at the lower end of low marsh habitat adjacent to tidal flats and tidal creeks. Our results suggest that low marsh habitat in Oregon estuaries may be able to keep pace with the current rate of sea level rise. We will also discuss the effects of recent winter storms on accretion rates.

Purpose/Objective:

Sea level rise and the ability of marshes to keep up with this rise have been extensively studied on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the US; however, there is limited information available for marshes in the Pacific Northwest.

URLs/Downloads:

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (PRESENTATION/ABSTRACT)
Start Date: 04/12/2012
Completion Date: 04/12/2012
Record Last Revised: 12/12/2012
Record Created: 04/06/2012
Record Released: 04/06/2012
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 242444

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS RESEARCH LAB

WESTERN ECOLOGY DIVISION

PACIFIC COASTAL ECOLOGY BRANCH