lunes, 1 de octubre de 2012

New article: "Risk Assessment of Beach–Dune System Erosion: Beach Management Impacts on the Balearic Islands"

The beach–dune system is a sedimentary environment that is fragile and dynamic. Any change to it can have potential adverse effects on its stability. In recent decades, this environment has been heavily exploited for recreation with management practices that do not have enough consideration of protective and aesthetic values. As a result, erosion has increased—mainly in the foredunes—and upset the balance of the beach–dune system. The assessment of the morphoecological conservation state plays a major role in forecasting natural hazard impacts. This paper correlates the most frequented sectors with the most eroded parts in four beach–dune systems of the Balearic Islands (two in Majorca and two in Minorca) through the Digital Shoreline Analysis System. The four beaches show that the coastline retreats at locations with the highest attendance. Two situations may arise as a function of the management practices employed: (1) the beach and foredune area is eroded or (2) the beach–dune system recovers. The paper also describes appropriate beach and foredune management practices that allow recovery of a system degraded by human activity. We compare these practices with strategies adopted at beaches solely for commercial gain in the Balearic Islands. A space–time evolution, from 1956 to 2008, of 78 beaches of the Balearic Islands was carried out through multivariate analysis of a checklist of beach–dune features and management measures. The results show that beach–dune management based on geomorphological criteria improves conservation of the natural system and minimises risk of erosion. Recovery of vegetation is also encouraged.

F.X. Roig-Munar, J.A. Martín-Prieto, A. Rodríguez-Perea, G.X. Pons, B. Gelabert, and M. Mir-Gual (2012) Risk Assessment of Beach–Dune System Erosion: Beach Management Impacts on the Balearic Islands. Journal of Coastal Research (In-Press).

Miquel Mir Gual

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