Beach Sustainability Assessment - Comprehensive Analysis for Management Project

~ Science to secure access for all to California's coast. ~

Year 2 Update

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Project Summary

California’s beaches are threatened by sea level rise; Iconic beaches will disappear by 2100—losses whose impacts will not be distributed evenly among California’s diverse population. Sustaining beaches and equitable access requires coordinated efforts by stakeholders combined with knowledge of beach resilience as well as how beach management affects access, use, environmental justice, and economic value.

This project focuses on the economic and environmental justice issues related to access, incorporating projected changes in beach size and availability. Our analysis will fold into a Beach Sustainability Assessment (BSA) including social science, ecology, and the physical changes projected for beaches. This assessment will be combined with estimates based on the best available data and methods, of beach value, visitation, and accessibility along with the barriers that reduce them and the people and communities who experience those barriers. From these, we can measure current inequities and barriers to beach access, identify beach access points threatened by sea level rise, and develop guidelines for how to best manage beaches in the present and under higher sea levels so they can be enjoyed by all different people and communities while integrating the importance of the beach with the frameworks of the economy, ecology, and morphology.


Environmental Science & Resource Management Program - California State University Channel Islands

Department of Economics  - San Francisco State University

The Ocean and Coastal Policy Center - University of California, Santa Barbara

Principal Investigators

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In memoriam

This project is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Nina Roberts, a champion of equitable access to public spaces everywhere.

Learn more about her work and legacy.