Coastal erosion is one of the main causes behind global warming.
This phenomenon leads to massive loss of land and sea alike. Every year, millions of acres of land lose to coastal erosion around the world.
Coastal erosion occurs due to a number of different factors. Sometimes it happens as a result of changing sea levels or changing weather patterns. Coastal erosion can also be caused by natural biological processes like tidal currents, storms, fog, and rain. Another major factor that contributes to coastal erosion is the excessive harvesting of marine life by coastal owners.
However, not all erosion is due to natural processes. Some cases of coastal erosion are caused by human activities like building new houses, digging canals, laying mines, dredging, and constructing oil rigs. Even changing the land’s drainage system can cause Coastal erosion. All these processes together can result in massive loss of land to coastal erosion.
Sedimentation of land takes place when soil is pushed inland or carried out to sea. Sediment can occur in the form of run off, washed away into nearby water, to the base of tributaries, and can even be transported further inland. When sediments reach the ocean, they cause an environmental problem called an algal bloom.
Algae bloom is a process whereby algae consume oxygen in the water. The more algal blooms there are, the lower the oxygen level in the water. As a result, fish die off as the levels drop, and eventually, the ocean sinks. This process then recurs hundreds of times every decade and eventually affects all creatures living on or near the sea bed.
Global Warming is one factor that contributes to Coastal erosion. Sea levels rise because of melting ice caps and glaciers. When the land recedes due to the sea, it puts huge pressure on the soil holding it in place. As this land recedes, it also sloughs off rocks and other sedimentary clogs that form in the base of the cliffs. This results in massive amounts of erosion from the top of the cliffs.
Coastal erosion can be prevented by preventing overgrowth of vegetation at the base of the cliffs. This will protect the soil holding capacity of the land from being eroded. Certain plants and trees can actually “mirage” the shape of the sea so that they grow in places where they would otherwise not be planted. This helps prevent erosion by acting as a sponge for eroding sediment, which otherwise would eat up most of the sediment before reaching the sea.
Other things can help reduce the rate of Coastal erosion. The prevention of building in the erosion zone can prevent a substantial amount of loss of land to coastal erosion. Many state parks have been designed with steep gradient towards the sea to minimize wave action and create a barrier along which sediment can be eroded away. Certain types of erosion can be controlled through re-planting. Replanting is done by keeping away animals and other invasive plants that might damage the soil, as well as by preventing compacting of the soil. Studies show that over a twenty year period, about 22 million acres of federal lands and over seven million acres of state lands are lost to Coastal erosion.
Coastal erosion can be prevented if steps are taken immediately to correct the problem. Education is the key. People need to be educated about the problems of Coastal erosion and Sea level rise. Studies show that education will benefit society in many ways.
Coastal erosion occurs when the sea level rises too quickly to the natural level of the soil. This results in beach gravels being washed away into the ocean, which further erodes the soil. Sea level rise is mainly due to global warming. Coastal erosion can affect public parks, national forests, and even small townships that rely on the revenue generated from tourism.
Coastal erosion can also be caused by excessive development of land. When roads, buildings, and other structures are built above natural drainage levels, they can become slippery. This creates a hazard for people who wade along the beach or in nearby creeks. Another main reason that makes erosion so destructive is that human activities such as housing development, mining, and other human activities can lead to excess population growth along coastlines
Coastal Erosion Around the World
Coastal erosion is one of the most serious global problems we face. More than six billion acres of coastal land has been lost since 1950. This figure represents about 80% of the total area of the earth’s ocean beaches. Many scientists believe that this rate of coastal erosion is faster than the rate of sea level rise. Coastal erosion is taking place at a rapidly increasing rate, and it threatens to displace millions of people from their homes and communities.
Rapid sea level rise poses a serious threat to low-lying areas around coastal shores. It also threatens to flood large areas of wetlands, which are critical for the biodiversity of many tropical and subtropical areas. Coastal erosion can cause major flooding if the rate of sea level rise continues to increase. The rapid rate of sea level rise is probably due to global warming. Some of the effects of sea level rise include death and severe damage to infrastructure, massive disruption of tourism and infrastructure, and loss of agricultural lands.
Global warming increases the rate of coastal erosion by changing the dynamics of natural systems such as river floodplains and low-sloping plains. It changes how these natural systems respond to climate conditions and to alterations in land forms caused by human activities. These processes tend to be extremely sensitive to changes in temperature, precipitation, cloudiness, or albedo. Global warming also alters the permeability of the soil, the physical and chemical characteristics of the soil, and the amount and quality of dissolved oxygen. These changes increase the rate and duration of soil erosion.
Rapid sea level rise poses a serious threat to low-lying areas around coastal erosion. It changes the dynamics of natural systems like river floodplains and low-sloping plains. It changes how these systems respond to climate conditions and to alterations in land forms caused by human activities. These changes tend to be highly sensitive to changes in temperature, precipitation, cloudiness, or albedo.
Coastal erosion is one of the most important consequences of global warming. However, it must be noted that even a very high degree of global warming will not lead to catastrophic coastal erosion. Erosion can occur irrespective of the presence of sea levels. In fact, even when there is no sea rising tidal ranges can cause erosion. Besides, gradual sea level rise is already having an effect on the global scale.
The main reason for the global warming phenomenon is the burning of fossil fuels for electricity and other forms of energy. The Earth’s surface temperatures are increasing due to global warming. This warming causes the earth’s vegetation and soil to change. This process causes the land to loose its boundaries and move into different shapes. Thus, coastal regions are losing land at faster rates as sea levels rise.
When sea levels rise, there is a significant increase in the rate with which the ocean can fill up and recede, thus changing the shape of the beach. This process can be particularly dramatic along the coasts of the Eastern Seaboard of the US. During the last century and a half, the rate of sea level rise has been double that of normal. Now, this rate is being considered to be double what it was during the earlier parts of the 20th century.
Global warming makes it more difficult for some plants and animals to survive. Sea levels have continued to rise at an increased rate, resulting in an increased rate of erosion as well. This has resulted in massive land loss and extensive damage to homes, properties, and other infrastructure. So, it is imperative to take immediate action and protect natural habitats so that they do not lose their value and end up becoming uninhabitable.
Provided by Antonio Westley
Disclaimer: This article is meant to be seen as an overview of this subject and not a reflection of viewpoints or opinions as nothing is definitive. So, make sure to do your research and feel free to use this information at your own discretion.