CSDMS 2015 annual Meeting - Models meet data, data meet models

Coastal Eco-System Integrated Compartment Model (ICM)

Ehab Meselhe

The Water Institute of the Gulf, United States

The Integrated Compartment Model (ICM) is a comprehensive and computationally efficient numerical tool that can be used to provide insights about coastal ecosystems and evaluate restoration and protection strategies. It includes physical and ecological processes, such as, hydrology, nutrients, vegetation, and morphology. The ICM can be used to estimate the individual and cumulative effects of restoration projects or strategies on the landscape and ecosystem and the level of impact/risk to communities. The ICM utilizes habitat suitability indices (HSIs) to predict broad spatial patterns of habitat change. It also provides input parameters to a more dynamic fish and shellfish community models to quantitatively predict potential changes in important fishery resources in the future.

The model is also used to examine the impact of climate change and future environmental scenarios (e.g. precipitation, Eustatic sea level rise, subsidence, nutrient loading, riverine runoff, storms, etc.) on the landscape and on the effectiveness of restoration or protection strategies.

The ICM is publically accessible code and research groups in the coastal ecosystem restoration and protection field are encouraged to explore its utility as a computationally efficient tool to examine ecosystems’ response to physical or ecological changes either due to future projections or to the implementation of restoration strategies.

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Of interest for:
  • Coastal Working Group
  • Human Dimensions Focus Research Group