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An optimization model for integrated coastal management: Development and a case study using Italy’s Comacchio municipality
Zagonari, F. (2013). An optimization model for integrated coastal management: Development and a case study using Italy’s Comacchio municipality. Environ. Model. Assessm. 18(2): 115-133.
In: Environmental Modeling and Assessment. Springer: Bussum; Amsterdam; Dordrecht. ISSN 1420-2026, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    Beach nourishment Dune fixation Integrated coastal management Beach erosion Inshore flooding

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  • Innovative coastal technologies for safer European coasts in a changing climate, more

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  • Zagonari, F., more

    In this paper, I develop an optimization model for integrated coastal management in which decisions arise from an area-based algorithm that minimizes predicted damage caused by beach erosion and inshore flooding, while accounting for economic, social, and environmental losses. The model favors the involvement of stakeholders in coastal management, but does not use complicated assessment procedures for non-economic indicators or relative weights to combine economic, social, and environmental indicators. Instead, the integration between economic activities or properties and the environmental status and landscape is represented objectively and non-linearly by referring to initial and sustainability conditions, combined with budgetary and environmental constraints. The model successfully accounted for both human and environmental dynamics by depicting delayed effects, neighborhood externalities, and feedback effects. It calculated a single optimal value for each integrated coastal management strategy, which permitted the support of future decisions and the evaluation of past decisions. The model’s insights were based on reliable estimates, with reliability determined by calculating the confidence level. The model was successfully applied to Italy’s Comacchio coastal municipality, where it revealed the priorities for optimal beach nourishment, dune fixation, and residential and holiday housing development based on budget constraints, beach losses, flood damage, pollution impacts, and land-use constraints.

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