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.
- tidal marsh
- scheldt estuary
- storm surges
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. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature12859