CCEE assistant professor Dr. Katherine Anarde was among seven scientists named 2022 Early-Career Research Fellows in the Environmental Protection and Stewardship track by the Gulf Research Program (GRP) of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM). The fellows will spend the next two years advancing scientific knowledge and its applications to predict and prepare for ecosystem changes in the Gulf of Mexico and its coastal zones as the region navigates a changing climate and energy transition. The fellows receive a financial award and mentoring support to provide them with independence, flexibility, and a built-in network as they take risks on untested research ideas and pursue unique collaborations.
Anarde will use the grant to support her work in modeling potential futures for developed barrier islands as they experience environmental, ecosystem and socioeconomic changes in a future climate.
“While it’s impossible to predict what the Gulf’s incredibly diverse ecosystems will look like years from now, we know the changing landscape will require people to adapt and become better stewards of the environment,” said Karena Mary Mothershed, senior program officer for the GRP’s Board on Gulf Education and Engagement. “This fellowship provides a unique opportunity for researchers to incorporate the best available science into programs building stewardship and protection of the Gulf region. We hope fellows will be trusted allies to Gulf region decision-makers and community leaders, and engage the public in understanding how the changing Gulf region affects the economy, environment, and our everyday lives.”
Anarde is a coastal engineer and geomorphologist who combines observational and numerical approaches to investigate coastal hazards. Her current research is largely interdisciplinary and focuses on climate impacts to coastal communities. This body of work includes projects investigating community- and household-level impacts from flooding due to sea level rise, as well as modeling of how humans alter natural barrier evolution over decadal time scales. Her past research focused on storm impacts to sandy coastlines, with projects measuring ocean waves during hurricanes and modeling of future infrastructure vulnerability. Prior to joining NC State, she was a postdoctoral researcher in the Coastal Environmental Change Lab at UNC Chapel Hill and project manager for the Collaboratory for Coastal Adaptation over Space and Time (C-CoAST).