Cees J. Louisse, Ton J. Kuik


Coastal defence is an important issue in the Netherlands since more than half of its territory is situated below sea-level. Coastal erosion causes a permanent threat for this largely natural system. As a consequence flood-protection of the polderland may not everywhere be sufficiently guaranteed in the future. Besides dune area with valuable interests may be lost. These problems will worsen due to sea-level rise. In 1987 the minister of public works instructed to perform a study to identify these problems and to develope alternatives for an overall coastal defence strategy in the Netherlands and to determine the effects of implementation of the alternatives over a time interval of several decades. The impacts of 4 alternatives have been determined with a policy analysis model, which has been especially developed for this purpose. Model calculations indicate that the more (structural) measures for coastal defence are taken the less are the losses of dune area and the higher the costs. As time proceeds (up to 2090) the differences in costs between the alternatives decrease, while losses for some of the alternatives rise highly. Accelleration of sea-level rise results in an increase of costs and losses ofdune area. Aremarkable increase ofimpacts shows up when a change in wind climate is introduced.


Netherlands; coastal defense

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