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In states bordering the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, vast areas of coastal land have been destroyed since the mid-1800s as a result of natural processes and human activities, according to the U.S. Geological Survey’s Coastal and Marine Geology Program. The National Assessment of Shoreline Change Project was undertaken to identify the physical factors that influence coastal land loss, including reductions in sediment supply, relative sea level rise, and frequent storms. Human activities, such as sediment excavation, river modification, and coastal construction, also affect the shorelines.

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