AbstractCoastal flooding is a significant humanitarian and socioeconomic hazard (e.g., Nicholls, 2010). Global mean sea levels are expected to rise over the coming century and mean higher high water (MHHW) and mean high water (MHW), peak levels that drive coastal flooding, show upward trends in many locations (Mawdsley et al., 2015). Significant coastal flooding will occur by 2050 (e.g., Tebaldi et al., 2012; Sweet and Park, 2014). Wave overtopping is primary driver of coastal flooding. Low-lying urbanized sand spits, backed by an estuary are particularly vulnerable to sea level rise. Recent field observations suggest distinct feedbacks between wave overtopping, beach groundwater levels and backshore vulnerability.
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