Dredging and the Shoreline Impact

A paper has evolved that predicts the long term effects of offshore dredging on the shoreline based upon realistic modelling rather than the speculative assumptions based on short-term unsound data that we have been exposed to up to now. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) has brought our attention the item published in Vol.130, No.6, November/December 2004 pp.303-311 of the Journal of Waterway, Port,Coastal and Ocean Engineering. It is entitled ‘Nearshore Impacts of Dredging for Beach Nourishment’.

The group of researchers introduced a methodology for predicting the impacts of nearshore dredging on the coastline by using numerical models for waves, currents, and shoreline change made from validated empirical data calculated from three locations of bathymetrybathymetric Bathymetry, the depth of the seabed, analogous to topography (on land). A bathymetric reading or survey is therefore a measurement of the depth of the seabed. Such a survey is usually conducted acoustically., wind inputs, tidal changes, etc.to show the wave transformations resulting. The calibrated model was then put to use to predict impacts of dredging on long-term shoreline change. Results reproduced observed trends of erosion and accretion along approximately 90% of the shoreline.

An abstract of the paper Nearshore Impacts of Dredging for Beach Nourishment may be seen here.

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