We are developing an integrated modelling tool that will be used to evaluate coastal resilience and scope alternative management options along managed coastlines with critical Energy infrastructure (SE England, Dungeness foreland & E England, Minsmere nature reserve).

Not all relevant morphodynamic processes can be known at high spatial resolution across the entire UK coast, so we’re focusing on a number of different coastal systems:

  • Perranporth and Slapton Sands are exposed high energy sites with sandy and gravelly coasts, and rocky headlands. These will allow us to study cross-shore and along-shore sediment exchange while considering sediment that bypasses headlands.
  • The Suffolk coast from Orford Ness to Hunstanton are partially-exposed to medium-wave energy conditions. This region of sand-shingle shorelines with soft rock cliffs and subtidal sediment sources will enable us to understand shoreline sensitivity to changing wave conditions, sea level and human impacts at a large scale.
  • Finally, Morecambe Bay, the Blackwater estuary and Tillingham marsh are sites with mixed sand-mud conditions. We will find out how biotic factors in the ecosystem affect coastal change and stability.

The research at these sites will lead to the development of an integrated model for evaluating resilience and scoping management options. The model will be used to run scenarios for two high value sites; Minsmere and Camber Sands, where there is critical coastal energy infrastructure and sites of scientific special interest.

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