Ecosystem-based coastal defence in the face of global change

S. Temmerman, P. Meire, T.J. Bouma, P.M.J. Herman, T. Ysebaert, H.J. de Vriend

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

508 Citations (Scopus)


The risk of flood disasters is increasing for many coastal societies owing to global and regional changes in climate conditions, sea-level rise, land subsidence and sediment supply. At the same time, in many locations, conventional coastal engineering solutions such as sea walls are increasingly challenged by these changes and their maintenance may become unsustainable. We argue that flood protection by ecosystem creation and restoration can provide a more sustainable, cost-effective and ecologically sound alternative to conventional coastal engineering and that, in suitable locations, it should be implemented globally and on a large scale.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-83
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • tidal marsh
  • scheldt estuary
  • climate-change
  • storm surges
  • sea-level
  • restoration
  • sedimentation
  • strategies
  • mangroves
  • carbon

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    Temmerman, S., Meire, P., Bouma, T. J., Herman, P. M. J., Ysebaert, T., & de Vriend, H. J. (2013). Ecosystem-based coastal defence in the face of global change. Nature, 504, 79-83.