Tuesday 30 Sep 2014Cliff and Shore Erosion Under Accelerating Sea Level Rise

Dr Mike Walkden -

Harrison 103 13:00-14:00

Environment Agency Research Project SC1200117

This seminar will describe work funded by the Environment Agency to apply a recently developed numerical modelling tool (Soft Cliff And Platform Erosion - Walkden and Hall, 2005), to build understanding of the transient stage of coastal response to accelerated sea level rise. The results are intended for coastal management application in situations where bespoke modelling is impractical.

Shore response to the expected global acceleration in sea level rise is an extremely important issue for coastal management. Accelerated shore recession is expected in most locations, however there is considerable uncertainty over the scale and timeframe of this response.

Most of the work on this issue has addressed shores comprising a beach and dune, whilst the very common shore type that is characterised by a platform, perhaps backed by a cliff, carved from rock or partially consolidated material has received relatively little attention. To tackle this broad scale problem it is necessary to deal with the wide variations in geology that may be encountered. Importantly the response of such shores is unlikely to be ‘instantaneous’ (as it essentially is for beach/ dune shores). These problems cannot be readily tackled through analysis of observational data, and so we must rely, to a degree, on numerical modelling.

The presentation will describe the approach taken in this project to simulate the general ‘transient’ response of such shores, new insights revealed by the work and how the output has been translated for direct practical uptake.

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