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Beach nourishment: an ecologically sound coastal defence alternative? A review
Speybroeck, J.; Bonte, D.; Courtens, W.; Gheskiere, T.; Grootaert, P.; Maelfait, J.-P.; Mathys, M.; Provoost, S.; Sabbe, K.; Stienen, E.W.M.; Van Lancker, V.R.M.; Vincx, M.; Degraer, S. (2006). Beach nourishment: an ecologically sound coastal defence alternative? A review. Aquat. Conserv. 16(4): 419-435. dx.doi.org/10.1002/aqc.733
In: Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. Wiley: Chichester ;New York, N.Y . ISSN 1052-7613, more
Peer reviewed article  

Also published as
  • Speybroeck, J.; Bonte, D.; Courtens, W.; Gheskiere, T.; Grootaert, P.; Maelfait, J.-P.; Mathys, M.; Provoost, S.; Sabbe, K.; Stienen, E.W.M.; Van Lancker, V.R.M.; Vincx, M.; Degraer, S. (2007). Beach nourishment: an ecologically sound coastal defence alternative? A review, in: Speybroeck, J. Ecologie van macrobenthos als een basis voor een ecologische bijsturing van strandsuppleties = Ecology of macrobenthos as a baseline for an ecological adjustment of beach nourishment. pp. 45-63, more

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 100708 [ OMA ]

Keywords
    Beach nourishment; Beaches; Coast defences; Coastal erosion; Ecology; Environmental impact; Review articles; ANE, Belgium [Marine Regions]; Marine
Author keywords
    sandy beaches; ecology; beach nourishment; beach replenishment; coastal erosion; coastal defence; ecological impact

Authors  Top 

Abstract
    1. Even though beach nourishment is generally considered as an environment-friendly option for coastal protection and beach restoration, sizeable impacts on several beach ecosystem components (microphytobenthos, vascular plants, terrestrial arthropods, marine zoobenthos and avifauna) are described in the literature, as reviewed in this paper. 2. Negative, ecosystem-component specific effects of beach nourishment dominate in the short to medium term, with the size of the impact being determined by (1) activities during the construction phase, (2) the quality and (3) the quantity of the nourishment sand, (4) the timing, place and size of project, and (5) the nourishment technique and strategy applied Over the long term the speed and degree of ecological recovery largely depend on the physical characteristics of the beach habitat, mainly determined by (1) sediment quality and quantity, (2) the nourishment technique and strategy applied, (3) the place and the size of nourishment and (4) the physical environment prior to nourishment 3 The limited information available on indirect and cumulative ecological effects indicates that these effects cannot be neglected in an overall impact assessment. Hence, for ecologically good practice of beach nourishment it is advised (1) to choose nourishment sands with a sediment composition comparable to that of the natural sediment, (2) to avoid short-term compaction by ploughing immediately after construction, (3) to execute the nourishment in a period of low beach use by birds and other mobile organisms, (4) to choose a number of smaller projects rather than a single large nourishment project and (5) to select the nourishment technique with respect to the local natural values.

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