Erosion is the process by which large storms, flooding, strong wave action, sea level rise, and human activities wear away beaches and bluffs along coastlines. In the U. Increases in storm frequency and intensity in the future will also serve to cause increased coastal erosion.
This sometimes results in a call from both local residents and political representatives for hard engineering works to be constructed. Groynes and other artificial measures to keep it under control has only accelerated the process further down the coast, because longshore drift starves the beaches of sand, leaving them more exposed.
We will weigh the pros and cons of the many engineering strategies hard and soft engineering that humans have devised to control shoreline changes. In some cases, the only way to prevent structures from causing harm may be to remove them entirely.
Wave action also increases the rate of reaction by removing the reacted material. But as understanding of natural shoreline function improves, there is a growing acceptance that structural solutions may cause more problems than they solve. The Holderness coastline on the east coast of England, just north of the Humber Estuaryis one of the fastest eroding coastlines in Europe due to its soft clay cliffs and powerful waves.
In Modules 2 and 3, we briefly touched on the natural processes of coastal erosion. In El CampelloSpain, the erosion and failure of a Roman farm fish excavated on rock during the first century B.