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Using Salinity Data to Develop a Coastal Salinity Index

Document Author
Paul Conrads / U.S. Geological Survey, South Atlantic Water Science Center
Document Date
Document Type
Document Description

Coastal droughts have a different dynamic from upland droughts, which are typically characterized by agricultural, hydrologic, meteorological, and (or) socioeconomic impacts. The location of the freshwater-saltwater interface in surface-water bodies is an important factor in the ecological and socioeconomic dynamics of coastal communities. Because of the uniqueness of drought impacts on coastal ecosystems, a Coastal Salinity Index (CSI) was developed using an approach similar to the Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI). Instead of using precipitation data, as the SPI does, the CSI utilizes salinity data.

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DEWS Region(s)
Coastal Carolinas
Climate Region(s)
Southeastern Climate Region