Where has my beach gone and what can I do about it?

Where has my beach gone and what can I do about it?

Where has my beach gone and what can I do about it?

The causes of coastal erosion and options for managing eroding beaches.

At the upcoming Coastal Councils Conference, Coastal Challenges – Smarter Solutions, Dr Andrew McCowan will be presenting a discussion on coastal erosion, the causes and impacts, and coastal erosion management options.


Dr Andrew McCowan


With increasing population and more hot weather, our beaches are increasingly in demand. In contrast to this, many of our beaches are actively eroding and require ongoing maintenance. This presentation will discuss the main processes affecting our beaches: wind, waves, tides, currents and storms, and will explore some of the main causes of erosion. These causes will include: the effects of natural seasonal and inter-annual fluctuations, the effects of coastal structures and the effects of changes in coastal processes in adjacent beaches. They will also include the effects of Climate Change and Sea Level Rise and the impact that these will have in the future.

The presentation will then review the options available for managing eroding beaches. This will include both “soft” and “hard” management options. In this context, soft management options include non-structural measures such as dune management and beach nourishment, while hard management option include engineered solutions such as seawalls, groynes, artificial reefs and offshore breakwaters. These will be illustrated by examples where different management options have been used.

To discuss coastal erosion and the management options available, please contact Andrew or our Coasts and Environment team on 03 8526 0800.


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