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How and Why are Sea Defences being used in North Norfolk?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

GCSE Coastal Studies Geography Coursework Introduction How and Why are Sea Defences being used in North Norfolk? The topic I have chosen for my project is on coastal erosion. This is an important topic to study because it affects all the agriculture and inhabitants of the coastal areas. Coastal erosion can take the form of many different problems e.g. flooding, physical erosion on the beaches and general cutting away from the coastal areas. Coastal defence has many different methods to counteract the growing problem of coastal erosion. Such defences like groynes, dumping, gabions, rock armouring, flood embankments, revetments and vertical seawalls. All of these forms of coastal defences are costly and the local council often dislike paying for them if they are considered unreliable. There is a constant threat of coastal erosion because of the green house affect and global warming and the melting of the polar ice glaciers, threatening to raise sea level therefore flooding unprepared or low lying areas. This is a big problem for the UK because it is an island therefore will be more affected. My overall question on this project is the title 'How and Why are sea defences being used in North Norfolk?' and I will be answering this question using the data I collected on my field trip to North Norfolk, this is data from beaches including pictures and measurements on the height and length of the sea defences found on the beaches in North Norfolk. I will answer this question in the form of five sub-questions then I will answer the overall question in the evaluation. 1. How do beach profiles vary? 2. Why do beach profiles vary? 3. Do coastal defences alter the characteristics of the beaches of North Norfolk? 4. How do coastal defences work? 5. How effective are the coastal defences in place? 1. How do beach profiles vary? The meaning of this question is to summarise all my data on the beaches in North Norfolk. ...read more.

Middle

Groyne Measurement. To Collect the Groyne Measurements: * I measured the height of both sides of the Groyne at 10 metre intervals starting from the top of the beach to the shoreline using a metre tape. I measured the Groynes to find the differences between the two sides and to quite simply see how long they were. We could then compare this to all the other beaches to get an overall view on the extent of the defences used. Sheringham Distance from cliff / wall (metres) 5m 10m 15m 20m 25m Depth to sediment East (metres) 2.33m 1.88m 1.79m 2.69m 2.53m Depth to sediment West (metres) 79cm 1.54m 1.89m 2.56m 2.56m Cromer Distance from cliff / wall (metres) 0m 10m 20m 30m 40m Depth to sediment East (metres) 1.05m 1.14m 1.12m 1.45m 0.80m Depth to sediment West (metres) 0.60m 0.40m 0.15m 0.35m 0.80m Overstrand Distance from cliff / wall (metres) 10m 20m 30m 40m 50m 60m 70m Depth to sediment East (metres) 2.30m 2.53m 2.15m 2.60m 2.35m 2.20m 1.95m Depth to sediment West (metres) 2.10m 2.65m 2.50m 2.60m 2.40m 2.10m 2.00m 4) Longshore Drift. To measure the Longshore drift. * I measured 20 metres along the shoreline and threw an orange midway between the points and timed how long it took the orange to travel 10 metres in any direction and then I recorded the direction and time taken. I measured the Longshore drift because this information is helpful when working out which beaches are constructive and destructive. Weybourne Time to travel 10m, in seconds What direction? 2 minutes 10 seconds (130 seconds) East Sheringham Time to travel 10m, in seconds What direction? 1 minute 34 seconds (94 seconds) West Cromer Time to travel 10m, in seconds What direction? 28 seconds East Overstrand Time to travel 10m, in seconds What direction? 1 minutes 45 seconds (105 seconds) West 5) Infiltration Rates. To Measure the infiltration rate: * I placed a plastic tube in the ground about 2 inches into the ground. ...read more.

Conclusion

This beach is entirely sand and very unsightly in my opinion. This beach is destructive. I conclude that the beaches vary from the way the sea defences are used. 2. Why do beach profiles vary? Weybourne - a destructive but dumping has made it a constructive Sheringham - a destructive Cromer - a destructive Overstrand - a destructive These beaches are mainly destructive because the waves have a long way that they travel without resistance and because of this the waves are very strong and they wipe the beaches of all loose rocks therefore can be very erosive. Sea defences help prevent a destructive beach destroy the effects of these waves. The sea defences are used in many ways as you can see from the pictures in question four. The different defences used on the four beaches in North Norfolk I visited were: * Groynes * Revetments * Seawalls * Rip Rap * Gabions * Beach nourishment (Dumping) 3. Do coastal defences alter the characteristics of the beaches of North Norfolk? The characteristics of the beaches of North Norfolk vary according to the different forms of coastal defences used. They can be very unsightly if there are groynes or rip rap but if there are beach nourishments then this can improve the look of the beach. Weybourne - attractive Sheringham - unsightly Cromer - quite unsightly Overstrand - very unsightly The groynes are large structures of wood or scrap metal and make a beach look messy, they are unsightly and not particularly effective. They alter the beaches look completely and may detract from tourism. The beach replenishing is very effective and not unsightly if the right sediment is used. This form of natural defence is effective and would not detract from tourism. Vertical sea walls are very effective but completely change the characteristics of a beach. This wouldn't detract from tourism but I would give the beach a completely new profile. 4. How do coastal defences work? Please see annotated photographs attached. 5. How effective are the coastal defences in place? Please see annotated photographs attached. ...read more.

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