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Coastal Defences

Processes, Problems and Solutions



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Coastal Defences by Peter W French

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There cannot be many people who have not visited the coastline and witnessed the problems of erosion or changes brought about by tides and waves. When such problems occur, coastal engineers usually remedy the problem by using a new set of structures to stop erosion, or increasingly by other means, such as the placement of sediment on the effected beach. However, such methods only treat the symptoms, not the causes. These 'solutions' can also create additional problems, which will need addressing in the future. Coastal Defences aims to present the broad spectrum of methods that engineers use to protect the coastline and investigates the sorts of issues that can arise as a result. The first section of the book examines 'traditional' hard techniques, such as sea walls and groynes, whilst the second looks at the more recent trend of using techniques more sympathetic to nature. These 'soft' techniques, such as beach feeding and managed realignment, may work more harmoniously with natural processes, but still produce some environmental impacts. By looking at each of the main methods of coastal protection in detail, the book investigates the rationale for using each method and the consequent management issues, presenting a case for and against each of the techniques. Coastal Defences constantly raises questions regarding the larger scale planning and usage of the world's coastlines. By resolving issues such as whether we need to defend our coasts in the first place and what happens with sea level rise, many of the problems outlined in this book could be avoided in the first place. Peter French combines a knowledge of coastal defence design and structure, with an understanding of the environmental and ecological impacts such structures can have, to encourage a new approach in coastal defence planning.
Release date NZ
May 17th, 2001
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
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