The coastal vulnerability index (CVI) provides insight into the relative potential of coastal change due to future sea-level rise. The maps and data presented here can be viewed in at least two ways:
1) as an indicator of where physical changes are most likely to occur as sea-level rises; and
2) as a planning tool for the Gateway National Recreation Area.
As ranked in this study, geomorphology, shoreline change, coastal slope, rate of relative sea-level rise, and significant wave height are the most important variables in determining the CVI for Gateway. Tide range does not contribute to the spatial variability in the CVI within Gateway.
Gateway preserves a dynamic natural environment, which must be understood in order to be managed properly. The CVI is one way that a park can assess objectively the natural factors that contribute to the evolution of the coastal zone, and thus how the park may evolve in the future.