The Emilia-Romagna coastline, situated on the Adriatic Sea in Northern Italy, comprises some 130 km of low-lying sandy beaches. The majority (57%) of beaches on this coastline are protected by some type of coastal defence structures, e.g. emerged and submerged offshore breakwaters, groins and sea walls Tourism activities dominate the local economy, generating an annual budget of approximately 8 billion Euros, or 8% of the regional GDP (Perini et al., 2008). To accommodate the hundreds of thousands of tourists that visit this coastline each year, private bathing establishments known as bagni have been constructed on the beach that provide a range of services such as changing facilities, food and drink outlets, recreational activities and deck chairs. These permanent structures are typically located close to the shoreline and are hence particularly susceptible to coastal inundation, most notably during the winter months when large wave and water level events are prevalent. At the beginning of each winter, bagni owners organise an artificial dune, or “winter dune”, to be constructed in front of their properties, in order to provide temporary protection against these more extreme coastal conditions. This dune is constructed by means of a bulldozer scraping sand from the lower part of the dry beach and depositing it in the upper part as a foredune. Where not enough sand is available from the lower beach, stockpiled sand from summer beach cleaning operations is often used to form the dune. What remains of these dunes at the end of winter is redistributed along the beach profile (Corbau et al., 2009). This relatively ad hoc approach to short-term coastal protection means that aside from the experience of bagni owners and bulldozer operators, little is known about the ability of these dunes to withstand different types of storm events. The optimal dune placement location as well as dune dimensions (e.g. height, width and slope) is also unknown. In this study, a new and innovative tool is presented that uses a combination of real-time predictions of coastal risk and numerical modelling to help minimise the risk of coastal inundation in the future.

A TOOL TO OPTIMISE “WINTER DUNE” PLACEMENT USING REAL-TIME COASTAL RISK PREDICTIONS, EMILIA-ROMAGNA, NORTHERN ITALY

HARLEY, Mitchell Dean;CIAVOLA, Paolo
2012

Abstract

The Emilia-Romagna coastline, situated on the Adriatic Sea in Northern Italy, comprises some 130 km of low-lying sandy beaches. The majority (57%) of beaches on this coastline are protected by some type of coastal defence structures, e.g. emerged and submerged offshore breakwaters, groins and sea walls Tourism activities dominate the local economy, generating an annual budget of approximately 8 billion Euros, or 8% of the regional GDP (Perini et al., 2008). To accommodate the hundreds of thousands of tourists that visit this coastline each year, private bathing establishments known as bagni have been constructed on the beach that provide a range of services such as changing facilities, food and drink outlets, recreational activities and deck chairs. These permanent structures are typically located close to the shoreline and are hence particularly susceptible to coastal inundation, most notably during the winter months when large wave and water level events are prevalent. At the beginning of each winter, bagni owners organise an artificial dune, or “winter dune”, to be constructed in front of their properties, in order to provide temporary protection against these more extreme coastal conditions. This dune is constructed by means of a bulldozer scraping sand from the lower part of the dry beach and depositing it in the upper part as a foredune. Where not enough sand is available from the lower beach, stockpiled sand from summer beach cleaning operations is often used to form the dune. What remains of these dunes at the end of winter is redistributed along the beach profile (Corbau et al., 2009). This relatively ad hoc approach to short-term coastal protection means that aside from the experience of bagni owners and bulldozer operators, little is known about the ability of these dunes to withstand different types of storm events. The optimal dune placement location as well as dune dimensions (e.g. height, width and slope) is also unknown. In this study, a new and innovative tool is presented that uses a combination of real-time predictions of coastal risk and numerical modelling to help minimise the risk of coastal inundation in the future.
coastal erosion; early warning systems; beach scraping; numerical modelling; Italian coastline
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11392/1745100
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